East Asian Languages and Cultures | South Korean Popular Culture
E350 | 31251 | Shin, J

Instructor: Jeeyoung Shin
Email: jeshin@indiana.edu
Class Meetings: Tue. 4:00-6:30 p.m., SW 220
Out-class Media Viewings: TBA

Course Description:
This course studies contemporary South Korean popular culture and
media from the late 1980s to the present. After a brief look at
modern Korean history, the course will introduce some of the major
approaches used in studying popular culture. We will then explore
various forms of popular culture (film, television, music, Internet,
etc) from the perspectives of their complex cultural, ideological,
sociological, economic, and political meanings in South Korean
society. Both texts and contexts will be examined, with considerable
attention given to the production, distribution, and reception of
these cultural texts. We will consider how these texts and practices
of popular culture, shape, and are shaped by, ways of thinking and
living in Korea. We will also examine how Korean popular culture
embodies hybrid culture by appropriating diverse foreign cultures,
and how Korean culture participates in the huge transnational flows
of culture around the globe. Among the issues that will be covered
are national identity, gender/ sexuality, youth culture, national
division, globalization, new media, and the Korean Wave. At the end
of this course, students will have a better understanding of current
Korean society and culture, along with the ability to apply the
analytical and critical skills they have developed to the study of
other societies and cultures.

There will be four or five mandatory out-class media viewings and
several in-class media viewings. These in-class media viewings will
sometimes extend the class period till around 7:00 p.m. No previous
knowledge of Korean language or history is required.

Required texts:
Course Reader
Occasional additional readings (typically short news articles) may
be handed out in class preceding their discussion.

Attendance and participation (including occasional pop quizzes/class
assignments): 10%
2 Personal response essays (1 single-spaced page; 450-500 words):
Pair presentation: 10%
2 Critical review essays (3-4 double-spaced pages; 750-1000 words):
Group project: 15%
Final exam: 25%