Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Degree Level



International and Global Studies


Hammond, Kelly

Committee Member/Reader

Zeng, Ka

Committee Member/Second Reader

Phillips, Jared

Committee Member/Third Reader

Bouchillon, Brandon


South Korea, hereafter referred to as Korea, lies within the Korean Peninsula. It currently boasts a population of 53 million people residing within 38,724 square miles and a GDP of 1.811 trillion US dollars, making it the 13th largest economy in the world. Since the Korean War to today Korea has turned into a major economic and cultural epicenter remaining at the center of technological advancements and pop culture production. While the exportation of this pop culture has allowed the economy grow at unprecedented rates, it has also led to less favorable interactions with Korean culture by people all over the world.

This research focuses on the creation and development of cultural commodification through social media within the 21st century. By framing the issue both through social media but also through modern understandings of exoticization, orientalism, and othering this research posits that the ability to view, interact, and consume South Korean culture outside of its naturalized home leads to cultural commodification. Through such media consumption, the South Korean other has become a commodity in the orientalist West.

In conducting this research, I looked at the ways antiquated terms such as orientalism apply to a contemporary context, the power given to Whiteness within the internet and abroad, the effects of the echo chamber of social media on the anti-globalization movement within South Korea and interviewed Korean women to understand their views on the growing animosity towards women within Korea.


Cultural Media