1st Edition

South Korean Popular Culture and North Korea

Edited By Youna Kim Copyright 2019
    204 Pages
    by Routledge

    204 Pages
    by Routledge

    Over recent decades South Korea’s vibrant and distinctive populist culture has spread extensively throughout the world. This book explores how this "Korean wave" has also made an impact in North Korea. The book reveals that although South Korean media have to be consumed underground and unofficially in North Korea, they are widely watched and listened to. The book examines the ways in which this is leading to popular yearning in North Korea for migration, defecting to the South or for people to just become more like South Koreans. Overall, the book demonstrates that the soft power of the Korean wave is having an undermining impact on the hard, constraining cultural climate of North Korea.

    Introduction - Hallyu and North Korea: Soft Power of Popular Culture

    Part I Popular Culture as Soft Power

    1 Soft Power and the Korean Wave

    2 The Korean Wave as a Powerful Agent: Hidden Stories from a North Korean Defector

    3 Popular Culture in Transitional Societies: An Eastern European Perspective

    Part II Circulation of Meaning

    4 Black Markets, Red States: Media Piracy in China and the Korean Wave in North Korea

    5 The Korean Wave: A Pull Factor for North Korean Migration

    6 Hallyu in the South, Hunger in the North: Alternative Imaginings of What Life Could Be

    7 South Korean Media Reception and Youth Culture in North Korea

    Part III Contesting Voices

    8 Other as Brother or Lover: North Koreans in South Korean Visual Media

    9 Discursive Construction of Hallyu-in-North Korea in South Korean News Media

    10 Webtoon and Intimacy: Reception of North Korean Defectors’ Survival Narratives

    11 Revealing Voices?: North Korean Males and the South Korean Mediascape


    Youna Kim is Professor of Global Communications at the American University of Paris, France, joined from the London School of Economics and Political Science where she had taught since 2004, after completing her PhD at the University of London, Goldsmiths College.

    Her books are Women, Television and Everyday Life in Korea: Journeys of Hope (Routledge, 2005); Media Consumption and Everyday Life in Asia (Routledge, 2008); Transnational Migration, Media and Identity of Asian Women: Diasporic Daughters (Routledge, 2011); Women and the Media in Asia: The Precarious Self (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012); The Korean Wave: Korean Media Go Global (Routledge, 2013); Routledge Handbook of Korean Culture and Society (Routledge, 2016); Childcare Workers, Global Migration and Digital Media (Routledge, 2017).