Popular Culture In Southeast Asia

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The word “popular culture” serves as not only a definition of a cultural category, but also an indication of massive consumer participation. But “ASEAN popular culture”, the letter has added both dynamism and dynamics to the evolution of regionalism in an area of popular culture studies. What’s about ASEAN in popular culture? What’s about ASEAN popular culture? Yet there is only limited comparative/collaborative research on the identity reconstruction effect of popular culture consumption on the average Southeast Asians. This statement thus aims to explore:

The emphasis of panel is on popular culture, social change and identity formation in Southeast Asia. The central theme is how cultural commodities in the intra-regional “flows” of this
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The 1997-8 Asian financial crisis has brought the issue of regional integration to the fore of the national policy agenda of the member states. Since then, popular cultural exchanges have picked up momentum and become an important component of the regionalisation process in East Asia and Southeast Asia.

To further complicate the situation, there is literally no “local” culture space in Southeast Asia which is homogeneous. Given that inter-national historical bitterness, political suspicion, and economic rivalries continue to linger in Southeast Asia, “unequal” cultural dialogues may be interpreted as cultural penetration by countries with economic and political muscle into their economically weaker neighbours. Uneven distribution of cultural market shares also exists among key players in the region. This may raise the level of anxiety over trade-surplus countries exerting greater influence on the formation of social and political trends and perceptions and thus gaining more ground in regional competition for “cultural soft
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The magnitude, dynamics, and massive geographic coverage of the “flows” of this cultural form in East Asia signify its potential to become a powerful vehicle for bringing to life the 1998 ASEAN-Plus-Three Summit’s vision statement on an integrated regional community. The identity-formation effect of the production and consumption of popular culture will of course take a long time and follow a tortuous route to occur, if it ever does. Yet the industry-produced popular culture “flows” and the immense intra-regional contacts they have facilitated at the people-to-people level may trigger instantaneous and massive nationalist responses in any locale to any imported cultural programme over even such matters as its content’s “truthfulness”, “accuracy”, “allusions”, “interpretation of history”, “claims of heritage”, to name but just a few. Clearly, the identity reconstruction of Southeast Asia through popular cultural consumption is an issue of political significance and consequence for the region, and possibly with serious repercussions on the world. It thus calls for systematic and collaborative studies covering the key nations caught in the dense cross-border cultural traffic in Southeast

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