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The national financial crisis and attendant neoliberal economic restructuring have led South Koreans into a situation where heavily familial(ized) socioeconomic functions and duties remain unreduced despite the radical developmental disenfranchisement of laboring citizens. Accordingly, family relationships could become and have actually become a conduit for a highly complicated set of social risks accompanying the radical neoliberal perversion of the developmental liberal system of political economy and social policy. South Koreans have tried to cope with this dilemma by carefully, if not desperately, managing the effective scope, magnitude, and duration of family relationships. Increases in divorce and separation, delay and avoidance of marriage, less or no fertility, and even pervasive suicide—all at historically unprecedented levels—are manifest symptoms of such familial structural adjustments to the post-developmental liberal context. In a sense, it is the outcome of a sort of self-imposed structural adjustment in social reproduction by a developmentally disenfranchised citizenry.
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- Demographic Meltdown: Familial Structural Adjustments to the Post-Developmental Impasse
- Chapter 6
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