—Gangnam Style’s worldwide success has marked
the epitome of the new “hallyu” (Korean wave) trend that dates
back to the late 2000s. Its origin dates back to 1990s, during
which the Korean TV shows became popular in greater Asia.
The next wave of 2000s introduced Korean music, K-Pop, to the
world, to a wider audience beyond Asia. In Korea, the
unprecedented success of Psy’s Gangnam Style ignited a heated
discussion on hallyu’s effect, marketing strategies and future.
The Korean government labeled the past two decades of hallyu
as hallyu 1.0 and 2.0. respectively. In the new decade, the
government intends to create hallyu 3.0, aiming to promote
Korean culture beyond the narrow channels of K-Pop and
K-Drama. After the recent wave of Korean craze has passed,
many have raised criticisms against the current discourses on
the new hallyu. Most of these disapprove of the cultural
imperialism and cultural nationalism that underlie the current
discourses on hallyu, and calls for a more open, global
framework tolerant of cultural diversity. These criticisms are
reasonable and necessary; Koreans’ cultural nationalistic
fervor is certainly a problem. However, they overlook the
inseparability between cultural nationalism and transnational
cultural trend. This study looks at cultural nationalism as a
constant in transnational cultural interaction, and treats it as a
subject worth exploring. To understand transnational cultural
phenomenon in case of Korea, the best historical example is
Japan, a past colonial power which had ruled Korea. Thus this
study attempts to further the critical discourse on hallyu by
comparing the Japanese wave discourses of Korea and the new
hallyu discourse of 2010s.
—Korean wave (hallyu), Japanese wave (ilryu),
nationalism, transnational cultural phenomenon.
Jimin Jung is with the Department of Korean Language and Literature at
Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea (e-mail: anyria@ naver.com).
Cite: Jimin Jung, " A Historical Consideration into Two Perspectives on
Culture Revealed in the New Korean Wave Discourse," International Journal of Social Science and Humanity vol. 5, no. 8, pp. 730-734, 2015.