Author: Musings by Shoshana B

Media and Communication student at Wollongong University.

K-Pop and The Twilight Saga: An Unlikely Cultural Clash.

SHOSHANA B.

When experiencing another culture, whether it be travelling, consuming foreign entertainment or a cultural phenomenon, I always use my own lived experiences as a foundation in understanding the concepts. After which, I find research, usually pop-cultural references, to further understand the lived experiences of those whose culture I am experiencing for the first time. In combining these two steps, I am able to relay and critically understand cultures that are immensely different to my own.

When describing my first foray into K-Pop fandom, I heavily relied on my own experiences of fandom culture to begin to understand the intense immersion associated with K-Pop. Although seemingly unrelated, K-Pop fandom and the Twilight Saga held many of the same characteristics to me; that of complete devotion to a product.

In the first third of my blog post, I used auto-biographical concepts to create the foundation and emotional connection associated with fandom culture…

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K-What? Entering a K-Pop fandom.

SHOSHANA B.

At age 13 I had my first and only foray into an immersive, dominating fandom experience. It was Twilight and I was unequivocally Team Edward.

It was summer and nearly everyone in my drama class had been clutching at these books for almost a month. Everyone except my group of best friends, who, at the time, thought we were way too cool and emotionally advanced for ‘vampire romance’.

Throughout school we were avid readers, but for reasons I can’t remember, turned our noses up to the phenomenon that was Twilight. Perhaps it was too mainstream. We prized ourselves on our painfully hipster reputation.

However, I was the first to crack. Tagging along to the hairdressers with my Mum, I asked for a copy of Twilight. Ironically, of course.

As if entranced, I read the first book in under 24 hours. And so began one of the most enjoyable and bonding…

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Akira memorbilia and life narrative.

SHOSHANA B.

It’s not until writing these blogs and reflecting on how I interpret texts, that I have realised the significance of childhood experiences and memories. Growing up with a mother working for Disney in animation and a musician father, film and pop-culture were instrumental in the dialogue of our household. My parents’ keen interest in the arts and pop-culture is a fundamental element to my identity. So, it makes sense that my interpretation of film, particularly animation, are often deeply linked to vivid memories of my childhood.

Although having never seen Akira, the title name is something very familiar. Watching films at home as a child, I can remember my parents discussing the strong stylistic references and influence Akira (and anime in general) has had on the making of many American productions. I can remember walking into my mum’s office every day, which was more like a floor to ceiling animation…

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Oh my GODZILLA!

SHOSHANA B.

When Roland Emmerich made the 1998 Godzilla remake, I’m almost positive he didn’t imagine the film resonating with a 4-year-old girl from small town Australia. With good reason, too. I mean the film is laced with violence, themes horror and a large lizard destroying New York City. It’s not exactly ideal viewing for young children. But in any case, for me, the year 1998 was the year of Godzilla and all associated merchandise (KFC Godzilla puppets in particular).  

Screen Shot 2018-08-26 at 4.49.03 pmLive tweet. 

Skip forward 20 years, I’m in class at University and we are about to watch the original Godzilla. Known in Japanese culture as Gojira, I had never seen the original film and was acutely unaware of its historical significance. To me, Godzilla was a pillar of my childhood, KFC puppets and Mathew Broderick. But, the significance of this film to Japanese culture and cinema is vastly different. My connection…

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