💌 An Invitation to Take Up Space
Image: Dave Young Kim, Mural, “Ohgane”
An Invitation to Define and Practice Jeong (정)
As the uprisings continue to reverberate, and the pandemic unfurls a second wave, many of us are taking the time to absorb the learnings of these past few months, digging deeper into the question of, “Where do we go from here?”
Last month, KQTs from many different regions joined a peer-led discussion hosted by KQTxNYC, facilitated with guest, Kristine Chong (MDiv), to explore the concept of, "Jeong," an often unspoken, uniquely Korean form of love, and solidarity.
Participants each shared their definitions and experiences of jeong: from the sensory (sharing food) to the communal (bondage through struggle). They discussed the profound ways in which jeong has the potential to powerfully and lovingly connect us: to ourselves, and each other in solidarity.
So, what is jeong exactly, and how might we apply it to our movements today?
The discussion surfaced an opportunity: jeong isn't just a resource we merely have as Korean Queer Trans people of the diaspora, but rather, it’s an energetic power we have a responsibility to wield.
Interested in exploring how you can wield jeong for yourself?
Try this self-jeong practice at home.
“The active calling of jeong, through the recognition of the self in the other, is a definite form of collaborative compassion. This collaboration with compassion is not one that seeks to maintain the status quo or to perpetuate oppression. Rather, such collaboration, born out of connectedness, seeks to work towards emancipatory praxis for all.”
- Wonhee Anne Joh
Recommendations from the KQTx Team
Many of us have been spending our time sheltering in place getting lost in a book. Here are two exceptional recommendations for your next read. Interested in discussing more? Check out the #reading-recs channel on the KQTx Slack!
An Invitation to Take Up Space: Contribute To Our Next Newsletter!
Do you have a burning to express yourself, but are lacking a forum to show off? We want to hear from you!
The KQTx newsletter team is currently soliciting content for a future newsletter. We’re looking for works of art, poetry, short stories, and more to include in our monthly digest of content. At present, there are no criteria other than it should be authored by a self-identified member of the KQTx community. To submit, please complete this form.
Finding Each Other: Building Legacies of Belonging
In April 2018, KQTcon became the first national gathering of Queer and Trans people of Korean descent (KQT) in the US, bringing together 200 KQTs and allies. Today, over two years later, a vibrant network of KQT groups and individuals have emerged—prompting our shift to rename KQTcon as the KQTx National Network.
Our KQTx family has activated especially during the COVID-19 pandemic and in solidarity with movements for Black lives. We are excited that our KQT Slack community has grown to 150 people, nearly as many people as there were at KQTcon, and many who were not able to attend in 2018! So, we are re-publishing a retrospective piece from KQTcon as a reminder of the work we are inspired to do. Below, we share highlights of KQTcon’s keynote speech: an unforgettable call to love and belonging by Mia Mingus, writer, educator, and community organizer for disability justice and transformative justice.
“I think about what it means for those of us who continue to show up for this thing that we call “queer Korean community.” Even through our heartbreak and disappointments, even through our hesitations and fear. This is the kind of love and desire that I want us to continue to practice. This is the kind of hope that I want us to live into and pass onto the next generation of queer and trans Koreans who will struggle to find their place and wonder if they belong.”
Wherever you may be on your journey in navigating kinship and belonging with Korean Queer Trans community, we hope our network of resources and community spaces continue to be radically welcoming places for you to find each other and belong. Thank you for showing up with us.
Read and listen to Mia Mingus’ full keynote presentation.
We're looking forward to seeing folx at a number of partner and KQT-led virtual events in August!
August 8 - KQT-DC hosts Game Night! Join us for a virtual game night where we will play skribbl, a free online picture-drawing game! 🎨✏️
August 17 - NQAPIA, QTAPIA Healers Meetup This will be a space for Queer & Trans API Healers to gather and be in space and conversation with other healers.
August 19 - NQAPIA, Political Education: Power Mapping In this workshop you will learn how to identify where power sits in any given system and how to use this information to build your organizing capacity.