동국포스트

Monday,March 25,2019
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Can't we all just get along?

 A few days ago, I heard a man who was once a member of a Korean pop group participated in a verbal attack on Korea. His voice was used as the main character of a video game in which the goal is to defeat Korean enemies until finally encountering and defeating the Korean president himself. It seemed to suggest that Korean companies are the object of punishment because they underpay and overwork entertainers. 


 He was once a member of 'Super Junior', a Korean pop boy group which became famous throughout South-East Asia. No one knows for certain why he left the group, however, there has been speculation that he left because of discord with other members as well as with the entertainment company.


 In some countries articles are frequently published which criticize Korean stars and Korean entertainment companies. These articles usually discuss problems involving plastic surgery, sexual bribes, and harsh treatment in the Korean entertainment industry.  Much of the content in these articles may be true, but they often contain one-sided and groundless allegations which tend to simply be slander. In other words, these articles are intended to negatively label the Korean entertainment industry.
 Other East-Asian countries have also spoken ill of Korean stars and Korean entertainment businesses while themselves following the trend of Korean culture. The success of Korean television dramas, as well as cookie cutter pop music groups has caused other countries to copy Korean culture as well. This phenomenon is reminiscent of the past when Korean songs, TV programs, films, and pop-culture in general were heavily influenced by the U.S. and Japan.


 Although the main stream of many East-Asian countries enjoys and copies Korean culture, there also exists antipathy toward it. This dislike of Korea is prevalent in Japan as well as other countries, even though Japan was once thought of as the ideal model by Koreans. On the internet, there are many web-cafes which have been opened by Japanese people who hate Korean culture. These communities often try to disrupt the popularity of Korean groups.


 When the popular Korean group 'Girls Generation' debuted in Japan, one of these outspoken communities insisted that one part of the song was saying the word 'feces' in Japanese. However, no matter how much they tried to defame the song, 'Girls Generation' proved their determination by ranking 1st on the Oricon Chart (a prominent music chart in Japan).


 It was said by Freud that there are two reactions which arise because of craving; Jealousy and Envy. Envy is to acknowledge the defects of oneself and to recognize a person who is more outstanding than oneself. On the contrary, Jealousy is the attempt to drag the excellent person down in order to avoid self-observation. Therefore, if you are jealous of someone you will only try to cause damage to that person, rather than trying to improve yourself.


 Let us be the kind of people who are neither envious nor jealous, but rather the people who recognize the superior features of each country and its people. Let us continue to see the best in people and continue to improve ourselves in order to work towards a cohesive, cooperative, positive global community.

Yun Seon-ju  besensible@dongguk.edu

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