[Vol. 20 No. 2] SAVE YOUR K-DRAMA FOR YOUR MAMA: MOTHER-DAUGHTER BONDING IN BETWEEN NOSTALGIA AND FUTURISM
|Title||SAVE YOUR K-DRAMA FOR YOUR MAMA: MOTHER-DAUGHTER BONDING IN BETWEEN NOSTALGIA AND FUTURISM|
Vol. 20, No. 2
pp. 377~393 (all 17 pages)
nostalgia, fandom, generational conflict, K-pop, television
As the South Korean government invests ever more heavily in its soft power, categories such as pop music, television dramas, and Korean cuisine—rebranded as K-pop, K- dramas, and K-food, respectively—become tools for furthering South Korean interests abroad, as well as for changing national identity at home. Although South Korea continues to be known as a land of excessive “education fever,” where children and teenagers go through a grueling school system in order to win acceptance at a handful of top universities, the growing pop industry gives hope to some children and parents that success may be found through other avenues. Elsewhere I have explored nego- tiations between parents and children over academics, artistic pursuits, and fandom activities; in this article I specifically examine discourse around the nostalgia-laden television dramas in the Answer Me franchise (which introduced South Korea’s first mass pop fandom era in Answer Me, 1997, and then reached back to 1994 and 1988 in subsequent series) and connections between the nostalgic pop fandom worlds presented on-screen and current K-pop desires and anxieties in South Korea. Drawing on interviews with mothers and daughters, analysis of media reports, and readings of the media texts in question, I argue that mothers and daughters utilize nostalgic media (K- dramas) and future-oriented media (K-pop) in the everyday to understand one another’s affective worlds, and to forge mother-daughter bonds. Evolving Korean screen cultures are shifting understandings of leisure, filial and maternal subjectivity, and productive citizenship in South Korea.