Korean Culture and Media Series

Author(s): Susan Strauss, Penn State
Publication Year(s): 2008-2009

The fundamental goal of this series is to present language and culture as an integral whole—to enhance students’ awareness of language through culture and to deepen students’ understanding of culture through language. Through the materials presented in our Culture and Media Series workbooks, students will be able to acquire and exchange information about Korea and about Korean people. Because we use actual media-based materials designed in Korea for Koreans, students will have the opportunity to observe language and culture in action and to more deeply understand the values and viewpoints that underlie the socio-cultural practices of Korean people.

Korean Culture and Media Series Cover Image
Type: PDF

Publication Units:

Unit 1: TV Commercials and Korean Culture
In Unit 1, we present a collection of television commercials, some of which were broadcast in Korea in June 2006. We present these audio-video snippets as cultural artifacts that reflect elements of Korean culture in multiple ways.

Unit 2: A Comparative Approach to Culture through Television Commercials: The Case of Korean and the U.S.
Unit 2 consists of a number of television commercials that were broadcast in Korea and a number of commercials broadcast in the U.S. In each case, we provide samples of commercials for the same type of product. That is, we have representative ads from each country for 1) rice, 2) beer, 3) automobiles, and 4) credit cards.

Unit 3: “The King and the Clown” (Film Series)
We discuss the 조선 Dynasty; the life of 연산군; the Korean caste system; traditional Korean music, dance, theatre, and acrobatic performances; and Korean theatre and film vis à vis theatre and film in other countries.

Unit 4: “Le Grand Chef” (Film Series)
We explain the background of the film’s origins, i.e., a comic strip, a book, and then a television program. We discuss traditional cooking practices, including the traditional kitchen, utensils, foods, and so forth. We also touch on the “language of food” in Korea and the United States, and examine the emergence of cooking competitions around the world. We also examine the genre of the “movie review” in Korea and the U.S.

Unit 5: “Radio Star” (Film Series)
We discuss pop culture in Korea and the world from the point of view of The Korean Wave. We also examine the concept of the pop star in Korea and elsewhere. This unit also compares the Academy Awards with the Blue Dragon Awards in Korea.