K-culture without “K-”? The paradoxical nature of producing Korean television toward a sustainable Korean wave
This article examines the changing characteristics in defining the Koreanness of Korean popular culture in the era of the Korean Wave. Based on interviews with cultural bureaucrats and television producers, the study finds that creators emphasize universal values and transcultural characteristics in their cultural products to increase cultural exports. As the Korean Wave becomes an increasingly important agenda in policy contexts, state authorities redefine Koreanness with successful Korean content. Combined with other elements in the production and distribution of Korean cultural products that indicate the globalization of Korean cultural industries, the findings of interviews explain that the meaning of the prefix “K-” is defined by the global popularity of products and the market logic. However, considering cultural products have functioned as a means of promoting national unity and signifying the national identity, such a strategy of producing “Korean-less” content often causes controversies.
Academy of Korean Studies (AKS-2021-C-009)
- Social Sciences and Humanities
- Communication and Media
Published inInternational Journal of Communication
Pages149 - 170
PublisherUniversity of Southern California
- VoR (Version of Record)
Rights holder© Taeyoung Kim
Publisher statementThis is an Open Access article. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).