Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Soft Power Politics

South Korea recently deployed U.S. made anti-missile defense systems.  China is very unhappy about them :
"China’s boycott against Korean culture is in full swing. The country that once was the largest fanbase for Korean stars, television programs, K-pop and so much more is shunning not just its popular culture, but also the fine arts, expressing their growing discontent to Korea’s plan to install the U.S. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (Thaad) antimissile system.
It started with removing Korean celebrities from China’s TV commercials, dramas and reality programs, followed by halting all joint productions of Korea-China dramas and films. Then recently, the country went a step further and began rebuffing scheduled events of Korean artists in China and even canceling its own events in Korea."
It's interesting that China isn't just boycotting tourism, a big source of revenue for South Korea, but also Korean "soft power" in the form of Hallyu, or the Korean cultural wave.  Losing money is one thing, but a threat to South Korea's perceived cultural significance around the world is another thing altogether.

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