Like a scene from 'Parasite': Floods lay bare social disparity in South Korea

Author

Hyonhee Shin

Hyeyeon Kim

Source(s)
Thomson Reuters

Using a plastic bowl, Ha In-sik bailed water out of his lower ground apartment in the low-income housing district of Sillim in southwestern Seoul on Wednesday, where flooding caused by torrential rain forced his family to sleep at a nearby park.

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The scene bore uncomfortable similarities with the sewage-flooded semi-basement flat depicted in the 2020 Oscar-winning South Korean film "Parasite," that was a tale of growing social disparity in Asia's fourth-largest economy.

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On Monday, three family members living in the neighbourhood, including a woman with developmental disabilities, drowned in their lower ground apartment. President Yoon Suk-yeol visited Sillim a day later.

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While large swathes of Sillim remained flooded, and residents likened conditions to a "mudbath", in Gangnam most roads had been cleared and traffic was back to normal.

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