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K-Waves (Hallyu) in the U.S.
April 26, 2023 @ 1:10 pm - 2:25 pm
Speaker: Young A Jung, Assistant Professor, Korean Studies Program, Department of Modern and Classical Languages, George mason University
Moderator: Seong Uk Kim, Assistant Professor of Korean Religions and Culture, Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures, Columbia University
Starting mid-2010s, Korean popular culture began to circulate outside Asian vicinities and expand its global fandom to the West, including South America, Europe, and the Middle East. The global expansion of the Korean popular culture fandom is mainly due to the advancement of streaming services and mobile media usage from the media ecology point of view. Yet, the niche fandom of Korean popular culture was predated long before K-pop and Netflix K-drama started drawing global fandom. This presentation deals with ‘transcultural contact zones’ which Korean Waves have created in the US context. The project examines the racial dynamics of Korean popular culture fan communities and explores the (im)possibilities of constructing pan-racial fan communities. Comparing the global popularity of K-pop and the expansion of Korean popular culture consumption, research on reception and audiences are rare, particularly on the reception of Korean pop culture consumption in the United States. This talk will present some preliminary findings of the current research, including a brief history of Korean Waves in the US.
Speaker’s Bio: Young A. Jung is an assistant professor of the Korean Studies Program, Department of Modern and Classical Languages at George Mason University. Her research is at the crossroads of migration studies, sense of place studies, media studies, and gender studies. She also has a thorough grounding in the history of modern Korean and Korean diasporic literature and popular culture. One of her recent essays, “Squid Games, Transcultural Fan Parodies: Black and Queer Adaptations,” appeared in <The Hallyu Project>, Post45 Contemporaries. Her current research project, “Division and Connections: Korean Popular Culture Fans’ Racial Dynamics,” examines the racial dynamics of Korean popular culture fan communities in the United States. She is currently completing the book titled Emplacing Mothering: An Ethnography of Placemaking and Belonging among Korean Kirogi Families.
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