Scribner Seminar Program
K-Pop: Unpacking Korean Popular Culture in a Global World
Instructor(s): Joowon Park, Anthropology
Whether through music, film, video games, sports, or cuisine, K-pop–Korean popular culture–generates significant interest around the world. The emergence of smartphones and social media, and the convergence of creative content and digital technologies, have shifted global cultural flows of local pop culture. The cultural market is no longer Asia but has expanded to North America, Latin America, and Western Europe. Drawing on recent scholarship from literary studies, film and media studies, ethnomusicology, art history, sociology, and anthropology, this seminar will navigate the social and political dynamics that have shaped Korean cultural production over the past decade. We will discover both the importance of the local contexts of production and the global reach of K-pop. Students will explore international power dynamics in the field of cultural industries, political economy, nation branding strategies, cultural imperialism and counterculture, and globalization by investigating the processes of production, dissemination, and consumption of Korean pop culture.