The Island of Sea Women Symbols & Objects

Lisa See
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Swallowing Water Breath/Sumbisori

Swallowing Water Breath and the Sumbisorir represent the haenyeo's almost supernatural ability to dive so deep and hold their breath for such long periods of time. When haenyeo perform swallowing water breath, which they do prior to their dives, they take three great breaths and fill lungs to their capacity. The sumbisori is the exhale after the dive that does not sound human, and each haenyeo’s sumbisori is unique.

Bulteok

The bulteok represents the strength and order of the collective. It is the fire space where the haenyeo meet prior to diving every day. Constructed of lava rock, it is round and roofless, and its entrance is located at the back, away from the sea. Located on the beach and open to the elements, it endures the winds and tides.

Goddess Statue

Young-sook and Mi-ja's performing a rubbing of the hand of...

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This section contains 825 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Island of Sea Women Study Guide
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