SOAS University of London

Department of Anthropology and Sociology

Felicity Davies

BSc (Durham), MSc (St Andrews), MA (SOAS)

Overview

Felicity Davies
Name:
Felicity Davies
Email address:
Thesis title:
Riding The Seoul Train: An Ethnographic Exploration Of The British K-Pop Fandom (working title)
Internal Supervisors

PhD Research

In May 2019, the Korean girl group ‘BlackPink’ played a sold out concert at the iconic Manchester Arena. A few weeks later, another Korean band ‘BTS’ played two sold out shows at the even more symbolic Wembley Stadium. Then, in quick succession three further Korean groups (NCT, Monsta X, Got7) sold out the SSE Wembley Area before the year closed. Indeed, with such acts playing for tens of thousands of screaming British fans, 2019 was the year that the UK’s huge K-Pop (Korean pop) fandom became undeniably evident. Although K-Pop has seen an unprecedented recent boom in global popularity, this UK based success remains a notably puzzling aspect of the industry’s international expansion; typically, foreign language music is not well received by the general British audience, no matter its popularity elsewhere. Thus my project, an ethnographic investigation of the UK K-Pop fandom, aims to address this peculiarity by asking the question 'What Draws UK Fans To K-Pop'?