Korean Pop Wave

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The Korean Wave: The Seoul of Asia by Sue Jin Lee — 85 The Korean Wave: The Seoul of Asia Sue Jin Lee* Strategic Communications Major Elon University Abstract Over the past decade, Korean popular culture has spread infectiously throughout the world. The term, “Korean wave,” has been used to describe this rising popularity of Korean popular culture. The Korean wave exploded in the media across the world generating a ripple effect. The Korean government took full advantage of this national phenomenon and began aiding Korean media industries in exporting Korean pop culture. This global expansion has contributed to enhancing South Korea’s national image and its economy and has been seen as a tool for public diplomacy. This paper analyzed the Korean wave and its implications for cultural influence on neighboring countries. Furthermore, this study explored how national identity impacts framing processes related to media coverage and public response. I. Introduction: The Korean wave—”hallyu” in Korean—refers to a surge in the international visibility of Korean culture, beginning in East Asia in the 1990s and continuing more recently in the United States, Latin America, the Middle East, and parts of Europe (Ravina, 2008, p. 1). The Korean wave portrays an unprecedented frame of Korean popular culture by the Korean media alongside the line with commercial nationalism. As a result, the Korean wave is manifested as a regional cultural trend signifying a triumph of Korean culture (Hyejung, 2007, p. 3). It is easily seen in this excerpt from a Korean publication: When President Roh Moo-hyun invited Vietnamese Prime Minister Phan Van Khai and his delegation for a luncheon meeting last September, something unexpected happened. After a moment of calm, the Vietnam officials stood up one by one and started to line up in front of a woman, asking her to sign their menus. The woman
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