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Valentine’s Day and White Day in South Korea

Posted By Harrison James On May 14, 2013 @ 11:26 pm In Customs,Holidays,Rituals, festivals, holidays | Comments Disabled

Item:

“Um, in Korea, they observe like different ways of celebrating like Valentine’s Day, in comparison to like Western cultures. Uh in Korea uh on Valentine’s Day, on February 14, instead of the guys getting something for the girls, it’s girls getting something for the guys. It’s usually like homemade chocolates, um like homemade baked goods, just like all this stuff. And then, a month later, on March 14, it’s called White Day where the guys kind of give back to the girls. There’s a saying I think where they give back three times as much, but what they do is the usually give also chocolate, marshmallows, and if it’s like couples they give each other like lingerie, all this other stuff.”

Context:

White Day is celebrated not only in South Korea, but also in Japan, Taiwan, and China.

Analysis:

That the men have to three times as much to the girls on White Day than they receive from them on Valentine’s Day points to the holiday’s purpose as a celebration of human relationships, and what inevitably ensues from them. The spring date of the festival reflects the associations of this particular season, mainly, fertility. In giving three times more than they receive, the males are attempting to find a partner, ultimately to fulfill the unconscious goal of reproduction.


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URL to article: http://folklore.usc.edu/?p=18868