The Korean pop music (K-pop) scene in recent years has become a fashion powerhouse where its highly visible stars exert tremendous influence on their fans’ fashion practices. As K-pop content is most frequently consumed on YouTube, K-pop music videos have come to be cybernetic runway shows, whetting the fans’ appetite for endless fashion consumption.
Join us for this exciting talk that will examine K-pop’s double entendre as both a seminal player in and a critic of the fashion industry by comparing two highly influential music videos—G-Dragon’s “Crooked” (2013) and BTS’s “Spring Day” (2017)—that allegorically comment on the contemporary fashion practices of quick accumulation and disposal.
Arguably the most successful artists in the genre’s history, both G-Dragon and the seven-member BTS exert huge influence on youth culture not just in Asia but far beyond. This talk will touch upon broader calamities generated by environmental crisis and highlight the struggles of millennials around the globe who are subject to the neoliberal ethos of ruthless self-promotion, often in the form of self-fashioning practices.
Suk-Young Kim is a Professor of Critical Studies in the Department of Theater at UCLA where she also directs the Center for Performance Studies. She is the author of Illusive Utopia: Theater, Film, and Everyday Performance in North Korea (2010), DMZ Crossing: Performing Emotional Citizenship Along the Korean Border (2014), and K-pop Live (2018). Her comments on North and South Korean cultures have been featured on major media outlets, such as NPR, BBC, CNN, NYT, Billboard Magazine, and others.
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