the 112th Kyujanggak Colloquium

Hanna Kim's picture
January 21, 2021
Korea South
Subject Fields: 
Anthropology, Cultural History / Studies, Korean History / Studies, Latin American and Caribbean History / Studies, Popular Culture Studies

Dear All,

The International Center for Korean Studies, Kyujanggak, Seoul Nat'l University is having the 112th Colloquium. Prof. Wonjung Min (Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile), who is currently Kyujanggak Fellow, will talk about K-pop idols for Chilean fans. The Colloquium will be on January 21th, 10AM (Seoul). If you would like to join, please register at Please write your full name and affiliation correctly on the Google Form. We will send you the details you need to log in one day in advance. Thanks in advance!

Topic: "The perfect man: The ideal imaginary beauty of K-pop idols for Chilean fans"

Presenter: Wonjung Min (Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile/ SNU Kyujanggak ICKS)
Moderator: HONG Seok-Kyeong (Seoul National University)

Discussants: KIM HYOJIN (Seoul National University), Kyong Yoon (UBC) 
Time: January 21 (Thursday) 10:00AM~12:00PM

Venue: ZOOM, Pre-registration ( is required for participation.

This paper aims to determine why Chilean fans of K-pop (Korean Pop Music) enjoy the incompatible aesthetics of K-pop idols. It will analyze the variation of the ideal of beauty according to socioeconomic level in Chile and fans’ perception of the beauty canons of K-pop. Hypothesizing that the relationship between race (rather skin color) and class in Chile affects K-pop consumption, this study will delve into why the canon of beauty attracts Chilean fans despite the contrast that exists with the Chilean canon of male beauty. Latin American culture is constituted by sexual roles marked and determined by gender (Valenzuela 2015); these roles perpetuate male superiority based on the figure of the male. Specifically, the hegemonic masculinity present in the region stands out for having such characteristics as strength, rationality, seriousness, domination, heterosexuality, and sexual activity. Asians are often called chino, and K-pop fans are considered strange. Though Chileans tend to conflate all Asian pop cultures, they make K-pop fans particularly suspicious of their sexual identity. Based on a qualitative analysis of semi-structured interviews with 17 upper-class and 20 middle-lower-class Chileans, this paper investigates how Chilean K-pop fans consume and negotiate with the aesthetics of K-pop in a conservative oligarchic society.

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