Author Archive

Is this the end for Girls’ Generation?

While the rest of the K-pop world seems to be going about business as usual, it’s been a trying few months for the SONE fandom. Dating scandals, a bungled comeback and a loss to rivals 2NE1 on the charts have cracked the usually impenetrable exterior of the group…

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Culture Wars: Can “Cool Japan” compete with the Korean Wave?

15 years in the making and after billions of dollars of government spending (or a hell of a lot more in won) I think we can safely say now that investing in soft power has paid off for the South Korean government. For the first time ever, the Bank of…

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Hold Up, What Do We Even Mean By “Feminism” in K-pop?

Lately, in response to the moral assault that was Girls Day’s “Female President” there has been a peak in discussion again about what feminist representations we should be expecting from K-pop girl groups. This of course is a valuable conversation to be having, but the last few articles…

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Queer-ing Kpop: Is same-sex shipping helping or hurting LGBTQ fans?

Anyone who knows anything about K-pop knows about “shipping”. The K-pop fandom is one of many fandoms throughout the internet where shipping two of your favourite celebrities or characters together as your OTP (One True Pairing) is a common part of the fan experience. It’s also not…

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2NE1 vs. Girls’ Generation: Are we ready for a crossover?

Despite all the setbacks and speculations, it appears as if two of K-pops most visible girl groups, 2NE1 and SNSD (Girls’ Generation) are both gearing up for English language releases this year. While rumours have been circulating for years now, the unexpected blow-up of a certain tuxedo-clad…

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Breaking K-pop’s Fourth Wall: What idols can tell us about ourselves

It is easy for people to dismiss ‘idol’ culture as irrelevant. Up until recently, cultural critics and music journalists versed in the ‘authentic’ rock canon of the 1960s and 70s paid little attention to the workings of girl group or boy groups deemed too ‘commercial’ and ‘artificial’ for their own…

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