BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Invited scholars from universities nationwide will join student and faculty experts from Indiana University in Bloomington for an academic conference exploring the impact of K-pop on the world.
The K-pop conference, presented by the Institute of Korean Studies and IU Council for the Arts and Humanities, will take place February 25-26 at the Gayle Karch Cook Center for Public Arts and Humanities. The talk is part of the Korea Remixed Festival, the fifth annual Global Remixed Festival at Indiana University in Bloomington.
“The Remixed series has always focused on contemporary forms of creative expression, and perhaps no South Korean cultural export has been as vast and prolific on the world stage as K-pop music,” said Ed Dallis-Comentale, Director of Arts. and Human Sciences Council. “The Remixed series also emphasizes the role of university students in expanding our understanding of contemporary creative culture, and we are delighted to have a number of our undergraduate and graduate students contributing to the discourse. with some of the country’s leading K-pop experts.”
Conference attendees will explore the historical, cultural and political significance of K-pop. The conference will include panel discussions, presentations from undergraduate and graduate students, keynote speakers, and a K-pop dance party and karaoke event.
“K-pop seems like an open secret. Everyone listens to it or knows about it,” said Toby Huter, an undergraduate student and researcher at the conference. “Looking at all the different presentation topics, I’m really looking forward to seeing how K-pop has begun to change the world and influence society. I’m also excited to hear what questions are brought to the table.”
Huter will give a presentation titled “Traditional Symbolism in K-Pop Music Videos.”
Susan Hwang, Professor of Korean Literature and Culture at IU’s Institute of Korean Studies, will give a keynote presentation on “K-pop and Street Politics in South Korea in the 21st Century.” She said the conference will “shed light on the dynamic range of K-pop and the far-reaching impact of its global spread.”
“The topics explored are diverse: the importance of K-pop as a form of soft power and street power, the promises and pitfalls of K-pop fandom practices, as well as the coexistence of traditional and modern in K-pop performativity, to name a few,” Hwang said. “Bringing together undergraduate and graduate students as well as emerging and established scholars from a wide range of disciplines, the conference will present a multifaceted understanding of K-pop at the crossroads of history, politics and culture.”
K-pop conference events are free and open to the public. The full program is available on the conference website.