When I heard the news that Park Geun-hye – daughter of the late Park Chung Hee – won the latest presidential elections in South Korea, the first thought that came to my mind was “yet another Asian women keeping her political dynasty alive?”
Benazir Bhutto. Sonia Gandhi. Aung San Suu Kyi. Yingluck Shinawatra. And now Park Geun-hye. What they all have in common is their familial connections to power. They are all widows, daughters, or sisters who inherited the political mantle from their male family members. While it is remarkable that Asia as a region has had more women heads of states than any other place in the world, Asia (from Japan to India to Thailand) is not light-years ahead in terms of gender equality overall.