Korea has fully stepped onto the global stage in stunning strides. From the Oscar-winning film Parasite to the pop juggernaut known as BTS, Korean popular culture has taken the world by storm.
This new Korean wave has influenced global tastes in drama, music, fashion, and can even be seen in the beauty industry’s obsession with Korean skincare products—Korea is everywhere. At the top of this list of greatest hits is Squid Game, a genre-bending Netflix series that has ignited social media platforms and inspired armies of devoted fans around the world.
The seeds for a deep collaborative relationship between Netflix and K-drama had been sown long before the phenomenal success of Squid Game, but what particular social conditions allowed for this show to speak viscerally to global audiences today as the most-watched drama in ninety countries? In Surviving Squid Game, scholar of Korean pop culture Suk-Young Kim throws back the curtain to reveal the multiple factors accounting for the global dominance of K-culture. It investigates the origins, manifestations, and future prospects for this cultural trailblazer, making it essential reading for both content creators and fans of Korean culture across all media.