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Branding music, branding nation : the use of traditional music in promoting the national identity of the Republic of Korea

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Title: Branding music, branding nation : the use of traditional music in promoting the national identity of the Republic of Korea
Authors: Choi, Ri
Issue Date: Aug 2011
Publisher: [Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [August 2011]
Abstract: In the late twentieth century, with the worldwide recognition of the Republic of Korea as an Asian economic power--one of the ―little dragons‖--the South Korean government focused on presenting a Korean identity distinct from those of neighboring Asian countries through preserving and restoring its traditions, including music. In the twenty-first century, South Korea has seen enormous economic success, not only in Asia but also in the world market. With such economic success, the government of South Korea feels a stronger national pride and now seeks to present new definitions of Korean identity with potential worldwide appeal, promoting a ―Global Korea.‖ With this government's newly-defined Korean identity, the government provides a more diversified fusion of music, still within the ―traditional music‖ category, making it a cultural product of Korea.
In this paper, I argue that the current economy-centered government strongly influences traditional music policy and the traditional music field. As a result, the government has adopted the economic concepts of brand and branding into its traditional music policy. By branding traditional music as a national product, the government expects future economic benefit, albeit possibly indirect. Thus, in order to attract more potential international tourists or investors, the government holds an ownership of traditional music and chooses to exaggerate, dramatize, or diminish its characteristics, functions, and narratives. Through examinations on government divisions and their music projects, I clarify the government's strong control over traditional music and its positional shift from tradition-preserver to producer of traditional music.
Description: M.A. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2011.
Includes bibliographical references.
Appears in Collections:M.A. - Music

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