While the influence of Western, Anglophone popular culture has continued in the global cultural market, the Korean cultural industry has substantially developed and globally exported its various cultural products, such as television programs, pop music, video games and films. The global circulation of Korean popular culture is known as the Korean wave, or Hallyu. Given its empirical scope and theoretical contributions, this book will be highly appealing to any scholar or student interested in media globalization and contemporary Asia popular culture. These chapters present the evolution of Hallyu as a transnational process and addresses two distinctive aspects of the recent Hallyu phenomenon - digital technology integration and global reach. This book will be the first monograph to comprehensively and comparatively examine the translational flows of Hallyu through extensive field studies conducted in the US, Canada, Chile, Spain and Germany.
Dal Yong Jin is a Distinguished SFU Professor in the School of Communication at Simon Fraser University.
Kyong Yoon is an Associate Professor in the Department of English and Cultural Studies at the University of British Columbia Okanagan.
Wonjung Min is an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of History at Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.
Chapter 1. Emerging New Wave: Transnational Hallyu
Chapter 2. Evolution of the Korean Cultural Industries
Chapter 3. Digital Convergence of Hallyu
Chapter 4. Social Media, Digital Platforms, and Hallyu in North America
Chapter 5. Participatory Translation of Hallyu in Latin America
Chapter 6. Hallyu as a Total Work of Art in Europe I
Chapter 7. Consuming the Contra-Flow of K-pop in Europe II
Chapter 8. Conclusion: Gained in Translation
Transnational Hallyu will benefit students and scholars of cultural globalization who are seeking new theoretical discussions. Besides theorization, the strongest feature of this book is its extensive review of relevant sources, rich examples, multilingual interview data, and up-to-date materials. In addition, the authors take a multi-level approach to examining governments, companies, and individual actors while dealing with structure/agency facets of transnational flow. It’s goal is to answer the question of “whether Hallyu is global and, furthermore, a globally hegemonic trend, and Korea has achieved super-power status in the global cultural market.” According to the authors, despite the previous successes of non-Western contraflows such as “Japanese anime, Bollywood cinema, Latin American telenovelas, and Turkish television dramas”, the global triumph of the Korean Wave, or Hallyu—including Kpop, games, K-dramas, animation, webtoons, cinema, and more—marks the emergence of a truly transnational cultural flow.
Transnational Hallyu is a welcoming addition to Hallyu studies as it offers a holistic approach to the study of K-pop across the globe. It employs both political economy and cultural studies in its analysis of the transnational flow and reception of K-pop in different geopolitical regions, and is one of the few books that provides a comprehensive understanding of how fans across North America, South America, and Europe consume K-pop despite their lack of geographical, linguistic, and cultural affinities. More importantly, the book engages with critical theories in the study of globalization and media, such as cultural imperialism, hybridity, and contra-flow to offer a new framework to the study of Hallyu as a significant vector of the global media and cultural landscape. In contrast to existing studies, the authors direct our attention to the significance of fans as producers and consumers who contribute to the circulation of K-pop as it travels across different geographical and cultural spaces. More importantly, the book helps us think of what an in-depth ethnographic study of global K-pop fandom would entail and further envision new theorization of Hallyu involving fan activism and transnational proximity.