We’re getting light-hearted in these crazy times and introducing you to the sociology of pop culture! In this episode, we use Dr. David Grazian’s work to explore what popular culture is and how it’s different from high culture. Then we make sense of culture’s role in globalization, and show how pop cultural products– like sitcoms, Taylor Swift songs, and anime– can act as forms of soft power. Tune in here to hear Penn and Omar nerd out on the intricacies of Naruto and Studio Ghibli, and to understand just how powerful and important pop culture is to our society!
Mahalo nui loa to Laura Kerr for helping us transcribe this episode! We heart you! Read the full episode here.
Popular culture, society, music, entertainment, globalization, soft power, anime
- Some earlier related episodes that you may find helpful!
- David Grazian’s Mix It Up: Popular Culture, Mass Media, and Society
- Ellen sang…
- “Style” by Taylor Swift
- “Popular” from Wicked the musical
- If you wanna give her a record deal, you know where to find her!
- What is Globalization? Check out Dr. Manfred Steger’s work!
- Wanna hear how Frozen’s “Let It Go” was translated and sung in 25 different languages?
- Soft power is a term coined by economist Joseph Nye to refer to “the ability to get what you want through attraction rather than coercion or payment” (JSTOR).
- Japan has been especially good at navigating soft power in popular culture with the use of mukokuseki or items/characters that lack in group membership, nationality, race/ethnicity, etc. They are stateless!
- Another great example of soft power from Japan is Hello Kitty. Dr. Christine Yano, a professor of Anthropology at our own UH Mānoa, wrote a book titled, Pink Globalization: Hello Kitty’s Trek across the Pacific on the globalization of Hello Kitty
- BTS brings in HOW MUCH to South Korea’s GDP?!