Public Display of Affection in South Korea
Public display of affection (PDA) is the act of two people indulging in an intimate act in public. It could be a couple kissing or two girls holding hands, pretty much anything that displays affection between two people.
But when one uses the term PDA, it’s usually considered to be an act that is rather physical in nature. No one really knows what people thought of PDA in the old days. But today, public display of affection is something that most couples indulge in, at least in the beginning of their days of physical exploration and discovery.
According to Korea Times, they said “it’s true that PDA is uncommon or looked down upon in Korea. Because In Korea it’s called skinship which we think stand from friendship and skin, but that is actually a guess.” But as goes by, it’s no longer uncommon to see young couples hug, squeeze or smooch in public. While some couples are still coy about anything beyond holding hands in public areas, others are unafraid of expressing their affection for each other in a more explicit, or sometimes even raunchy, manner.
As we stayed in Seoul for the past few days, we saw some local doing PDA, such as in subway station, pedestrian, tourists attractions, and so on. They did holding hands, leaning on each other, hugging, and kissing. Some doesn’t seems noticing others in public, even though there are warning signs about PDA in the subway. For us foreigner, we definitely see many differences in culture and habit of people in Seoul. As we know that South Korea are famous of the melancholic romantic drama, and we believe that this habit such as PDA, are influenced by that.
However, older generations can’t stand when young couples cross the thin line that determines appropriate PDA, but younger people don’t appear to mind the frowns or dagger looks aimed by appalled onlookers. People around couples who display their love in public sometimes find themselves in an awkward situation which they have to deal with, one way or another, and many still struggle to find the most appropriate way of doing this without making the situation more embarrassing for the couples or themselves.
If two people sitting and leaning besides each other, and also holding hands are quite unacceptable. Hugging and kissing are totally unacceptable.
Hugging and touching are quite acceptable among some people, but kissing is uncommon and considered inappropriate even though they are a married couple.
Hugging is common between people of the same gender. Kissing between opposite gender in public places is very rare and considered as ‘Indecent’.
In the big town the PDAs (holding hands, hugging, and kissing) are acceptable, but they are not acceptable in the small town. For those citizens from big town, they respect to not doing PDA in front of small town citizens.
We can conclude from the countries mentioned above, most of the acceptable and the unacceptable PDAs are based on the area. Every area have a different culture and society that affected the behaviours, and believes of the citizens. That’s why PDAs are not fully acceptable for countries mentioned above.
Team 3 Asia Student Summit 2018 Batch 2
1. SHOURZA TALUKDER
2. SHREYA SINGH BHALLA
3. SITI LAYLATU SYARIFAH BT
5. SNEHA CHOUDHURY
6. RATNA PURNASARI
7. FERA FANESYA
8. PUJI REVIMINGGA
9. ALDILA PUTRI SYARIFAH
10. RICHELU YARKPA FORKPA
11. RIZAL FAUZI
12. SHOURZA TALUKDER