Monday 11 December 2023

Book Review: Hallyu!: The Korean Wave (Non-Fiction)

Title: Hallyu!: The Korean Wave
Author: Rosalie Kim (Ed.)
Publisher: V & A Museum
Publication Date: 2022
Pages: 240
Format: Hardback
Genre: Non-Fiction
Source: Bought Copy

From Squid Game to BTS, V&A Asian Department curator Rosalie Kim’s Hallyu! shows how Korean pop culture has swept the world.

South Korea has transformed from a country devastated by war in the late 1950s to a leading cultural powerhouse of the 21st century. Through the voices of fans, journalists, practitioners, and academics, Hallyu! explores the makings of the Korean Wave of cultural influence over the interlinked creative industries of cinema, drama, music, fandom, beauty, and fashion.

K-pop legends such as Psy, Blackpink, and BTS, and films and dramas such as Parasite and Squid Game , feature alongside Webtoon comic strips, catwalk shots, contemporary hanbok clothing, and cosmetics packaging—just some of the illustrations that capture the creative, colorful, and dynamic popular culture of South Korea.

Hallyu! The Korean Wave was a fun and insightful read looking at the emergence of interest in Korean popular culture around the world. The book covers everything from film to music to fashion and beauty, so there is something for everyone regardless of what aspects of Korean culture they are interested in. The book contained a lot of excellent colour images alongside the text, making it also a very visually appealing read. I am giving it 4.5 stars.

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