Lie, John. Han Unbound: The Political Economy of South Korea. Stanford, CA: Stanford UP, 1998. Print. An essential read for anyone interested in learning about South Korean development. With a plethora of resources to follow-up on, Lie challenges many long-held viewpoints of Korean Development with convincing evidence. He also focuses on the human experience of Korean development, and the impact Korean development had on the Korean people. Many people praise and paint the period as one of success, a nostalgic, exciting time that Korea as a whole is immensely proud of. There is no doubting Korea has much pride in its journey, but John details the pain and suffering of the Korean worker, the high cost of developed. His last lines conclude that beaus of the social unrest and distress it has cause Korea, it was not worth it.  If you want a contrarian, critical view of Korean development


Chua, Beng Huat., and Kōichi Iwabuchi. East Asian Pop Culture: Analyzing the Korean Wave. Hong Kong: Hong Kong UP, 2008. Print. Identifying the uneven flows of cultural products across East Asia, particularly products flowing out of Korea such as pop music are connected not only to economic and institutional differences in entertainment industries, but also the colonial past of East Asia (also intertwined with institutional differences). It delves into the complex cultural history of Korea and Japan and how k-pop music and Korean dramas have affected that narrative and relationship.

Gibson, Lisanne. “Cultural Development Meets Rock and Roll (or What Government Can Learn from Pop Music Festivals).” International Journal of Cultural Policy 7.3 (2001): 479-92. Print. A piece about music festivals, specifically outdoor youth oriented events, and how government policy can work with them to develop culture. Is not about Korea, and doesn’t cite Korea, but is highly applicable to Korean pop music and the Korean governments increasing involvement in Korean pop music.

Hayashi, Kaori, and EunJeung Lee. “The Potential of Fandom and the Limits of Soft Power: Media Representations on the Popularity of a Korean Melodrama in Japan.” Social Science Japan Journal 10.2 (2007): 197-216. Oxford Journals. Oxford University Press, 15 Nov. 2007. Web. 05 Oct. 2012 . A great piece about fandom surrounding the initial Kpop wave in Japan and the role of the female fans and national sentiments between Korea and Japan.This looks into Korean pop culture products, soft power, and relations with Japan, so many topics all in one.

Jeongsuk, Joo. “Transnationalization of Korean Popular Culture and the Rise of “Pop Nationalism” in Korea.” Transnationalization of Korean Popular Culture and the Rise of “Pop Nationalism” in Korea 44.3 (2011): 489-504. Print. Especially important piece about Nationalism and the Korean Wave and how the two have become intertwined and have a complex relationship supporting and repressing one another. Korean nationalism is an interesting topic and an important one when talking about Kpop.

Jung, Sun. Korean Masculinities and Transcultural Consumption: Yonsama, Rain, Oldboy, K-Pop Idols. Hong Kong: Hong Kong UP, 2011. Print. Extensive discussion of masculinity in Korea cultural; products, with special detail spent on the multi-layered, non-nationalistic, flexible and androgynous masculinity represented by male Korean pop idols and its powerful abilities to gain male attracted fans. This is quite specific to male idols and male artists, and is a novel so it must be purchased for the full read.

Kim, Jeongmee. “Why Does Hallyu Matter? The Significance of the Korean Wave in South Korea.” Critical Studies in Television: An International Journal of Television Studies Autumn 2.2 (2007): 47-59. Igentaconnect. Web. 12 Oct. 2012. Korean pop music is part of the ‘Hallyu Wave’ or Korean pop culture across Asia, and this article analyzes the significance of the wave to the Korean people. Broad topic and paper that is a good introductory piece to the topic.

Kim, Samuel Seongseop, Jerome Agrusa, Kaye Chon, and Youngshin Cho. “The Effects of Korean Pop Culture on Hong Kong Residents’ Perceptions of Korea as a Potential Tourist Destination.” Journal of Travel & Tourism Marketing 24.2 (2008): 163-83. Print. An article about how Korean pop culture media affects Hong Kong viewers decisions about traveling abroad to Korea, and thus the large implications about Korean pop culture’s effect on its international fans. This is more about the periphery effects of Kpop on Korea’s reputation abroad than Kpop in Korea or Kpop in the music industry. If you’re interested in Soft Power this is a good article.

Lee, Jamie Shinhee. “Crossing and Crossers in East Asian Pop Music: Korea and Japan.” World Englishes 25.2 (2006): 235-50. Print. An article that addresses the success of Korean music in Japan, and vice versa, as connected to their colonial past and still living cultural and social tensions. This is specifically about Korean music in Japan, as opposed to the mutual exchange of music as in the Shin article below.

Maliangkay, Roald. “When the Korean Wave Ripples.” International Institute for Asian Studies Newsletter (2006): n. page. IIAS. Web. 7 Oct. 2012. A quirky piece that takes a look at the Korean music craze and music piracy, a must to have a more complete understanding of the intricacies of the Korean music industry and its relationship with its consumers. Connected with Kpop but less to do with the stars and more to do with the products and companies.

Ryoo, Woongjae. “Globalization, or the Logic of Cultural Hybridization: The Case of the Korean Wave.” Asian Journal of Communication 19.2 (2009): 137-51. Print. This article discusses the significance of the rise of Asia and the Republic of Korea and how pop culture plays a central part in showing shifting global dynamics in Asia and beyond. If you want a more holistic view of how Kpop is  affecting Korea’s place in the world and geopolitics, read this.

Shin, Hyunjoon. “Have You Ever Seen the Rain? And Who’ll Stop the Rain?: The Globalizing Project of Korean Pop (K-pop).” Inter-Asia Cultural Studies 10.4 (2009): 507-23. Print. Focusing on Korean megastar Rain, or 비 as he is known in Korea, Shin questions the globalizing power of K-pop and its uniquely denationalized stars and their ability to cull large audiences abroad relative to Korea’s young cultural product industry. A case study about  Korean meg star and the future of Kpop.

Shin, Hyunjoon. “Reconsidering Transnational Cultural Flows of Popular Music in East Asia: Transbordering Musicians in Japan and Korea Searching for “Asia”” Korea Studies 33 (2009): 101-23. Project Muse. Web. 10 Oct. 2012. Great piece looking at how the flows of music between Korea and Japan and how it may affect the process of developing relationships between Japan and Korea in the context of their colonial history. Japan and Korea have some serious cultural conflicts so if you would like to learn more about that and how Korean pop music comes into the picture, read this.

Starrs, Roy. Asian Nationalism in an Age of Globalization. Richmond, Surrey: Japan Library (Curzon), 2001. Print. A group of Asian Studies work across many areas that delve into not only economic and political policy but also the power of popular culture in Asia (particularly Japan and Korea) in forming the dialectical relationship between nationalism and modernization. These are often portrayed as opposing forces, however this text challenges that assumption and we can also see that played out in Korean nationalism and globalization exhibited in Korean popular culture products.

What Is the K in K-pop? South Korean Popular Music, the Culture Industry, and National  A piece that explores Korean pop music in the broader landscape of Korean culture and society, not just that of pop culture but of traditional culture, politics, society, economics, and more.If you want to know more about how Kpop may or may not affect other parts of Korean culture, read this.

Hybridity and the rise of Korean popular culture in Asia An attempt to explain how Korean pop music, a virtual unknown in the industry in the late 90’s, has rocketed onto the Asian and world stage. This gives a good historical context of where Korean pop music has come from to give perspective on where it may be going.

Shim, Doobo. Waxing the Korean Wave. Thesis. University of Singapore, 2011. N.p.: Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore, n.d. ARI Working Paper Series. Web. 1 Dec. 2012.  This gives some historical context to the rise of Korea and broader international activities, not just Japan.