Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Lecture "The Foundations of Korean Wave (Hallyu)" at Pitt, February 10.

The Asian Studies Center at the University of Pittsburgh and the Department of Music will host Dr. Keith Howard and his lecture "The Foundations of Korean Wave (Hallyu)" on February 10. An early summary:
The beginnings of Korean Wave are typically linked to the term 'hallyu', denoting South Korean cultural exports to China and Taiwan. The ability of South Korea's cultural producers to seize these export opportunities was facilitated by early 1990s changes in domestic consumption and production, which soon made South Korea's recorded music industry the second largest in Asia, despite the Asian financial crisis that followed. Today, the South Korean music industry has shifted from a fan-oriented service business to business servicing, and to a model in which music is made freely available to consumers – as 'Gangnam Style' demonstrated. However, theories explaining the Wave struggle to catch up with reality. Accounts of Korean Wave typically situate it within frames of post-colonialism, nationalism and neoliberalism, and there is an increasing divergence between foreign and local commentaries. My presentation looks back to K-pop in the early 1990s, and charts through two decades to Psy's 'Gangnam Style'.
The free lecture runs from 12:00 to 1:30 pm in room 4130 Posvar Hall (map). Dr. Howard is a professor in the University of London's Department of Music. He gave a similar presentation in October 2013 at the First World Congress on Hallyu, where he was the keynote speaker. His article "The Foundations Of Hallyu– K-Pop’s Coming Of Age" is available online.