Korean Culture Essay

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The year is 2012. Korean pop star PSY’s song “Gangnam Style” has topped the music charts of more than 30 countries across the seven continents. World leaders like Barack Obama have attempted the horseriding dance of the ubiquitous hit. It has become the most-watched music video of its time, hitting over one billion views on Youtube within a few months. Yet, the song is almost sung entirely in the Korean language. South Korea is a small country, with around 50 million people inhabiting the region. Yet, within the past decade, its popular culture has swept across a majority of Asia and invaded varying parts of the Western hemisphere. This tsunami-like spread of Korean entertainment culture at the turn of the twenty-first century has become known…show more content…
The marketability of their celebrities evolved from the integration of television as the medium to promote South Korean music. The polished packing of the image and performance of an idol have given rise to media that was ready to be consumed by international audiences online. Due to the popularity, South Korea has seen yet another one of their manufacturing exports succeed. In the past, it was an anomaly for songs of different languages to cross into mainstream media due to a cultural barrier. After all, the songs played in America were and are primarily songs from American and British artists. However, the emergence of K-pop on the airwaves is evident of a shift into a new normal. In fact, South Korean pop groups have already begun to find moderate success in the global market. For example, Girls ' Generation sold out Madison Square Garden in 2011. Superstars like Bruno Mars and Skrillex have collaborated on songs and albums with Korean artists. More recently, in 2017, boy group BTS impressed American audiences with dance songs like “DNA” and “MIC Drop,” leading to them appearing on national television shows such as The Ellen Degeneres Show and winning awards from the Billboard Music Awards. As the K-pop production machine continues to manufacture talent and music, it seems as though K-pop will continue to prosper and pervade cultures across the

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