90. What’s Up in Dramaland Special: School Bullying in Dramas vs. Real Life | When Our Faves Fail Us | Feat. Prof. CedarBough Saeji

Welcome to our special edition of What’s Up in Dramaland, with Professor CedarBough Saeji. We ask CedarBough to share her thoughts on the bullying scandals, how dramas compare with real life, and what the role of fandom is during times of moral crisis.

TIMESTAMPS:

00:02:17: Introducing Professor CedarBough Saeji
00:04:33: Perceptions and prevalence of bullying in Korean schools
00:06:03: Overview of actors accused of school violence
00:13:27: The difficulties presented by S. Korean defamation laws
00:15:44: The celebrity-corporate ecosystem, and the socioeconomic value of a clean reputation
00:21:54: What do accusers want from the accused? Who else has a stake in the outcome of these allegation, and how does it affect the investigation?
00:25:23: Why now, and why is bullying such a hot button issue with the general public? What does society and “the discourse” owe to victims?
00:30:44: Hierarchy as a societal problem, and school life as the learning ground for negotiating pecking order
00:36:04: Competition and academic success: who becomes a bully in Korean schools, and what has celebrity got to do with it?
00:45:13: As a fan, what is an appropriate response to have when you learn about the wrongdoings of an actor you like?
00:51:26: International fandom, and doubling down on expectations of celebrity perfection
00:53:21: Is there a path to redemption after celebrity wrongdoing? How to make a comeback, and gender differences
00:58:05: How jealousy moves mountains: the Tablo scandal, and struggling to survive “Hell Joseon”
01:01:01: How should dramas themselves/the industry respond? Situating ourselves as fans and outsiders
01:05:06: Concluding remarks

LINKS AND READING:

Professor CedarBough Saeji:

James Turnbull:

Other:

  • The Tablo Scandal [Stanford Magazine]
  • Further reading referenced in the episode: Shin, Haerin (2015). Tablo and Spectatorship. Choi, J.B. & Maliangkay, R. K-Pop – The International Rise of the Korean Music Industry (Ch. 15). Routledge.

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This episode was edited by Saya.

5 thoughts on “90. What’s Up in Dramaland Special: School Bullying in Dramas vs. Real Life | When Our Faves Fail Us | Feat. Prof. CedarBough Saeji

Add yours

  1. Wait a minute! Is there a video version???

    On Sat, Mar 20, 2021 at 1:53 PM Dramas Over Flowers wrote:

    > Saya posted: ” Welcome to our special edition of What’s Up in Dramaland, > with Professor CedarBough Saeji. We ask CedarBough to share her thoughts on > the bullying scandals, how dramas compare with real life, and what the role > of fandom is during times of moral crisis. ” >

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Drama Kweens,

    Oh my God! That was such a good episode! I learned SO much and you guys asked such great questions! The guest was so learned and, while I would’ve liked more policy recommendations, I appreciated her structural approach to understanding bullying in Korea. I know that in the bullying literature in the United States, we often find that people who are bullied often are also bullies themselves. I might email that professor and ask her whether she thinks that is also happening in Korea.

    I had heard you guys refer to Hell Joseon before and I had no idea what that was so I had to look it up. Again, I learned so much! It hurt my heart a little bit to be reminded of how much competition there is on that little peninsula. I hate it when young people feel like there is not much hope for them except for working themselves to death. I think I now understand why going abroad is a common theme in these K dramas. It seems like escapism within an escapism. I know that eating disorders and suicide rates have been climbing for younger cohorts in the United States and I wonder if it’s a global phenomenon for industrialized societies. It seems like the youth all around the world are disenchanted with our current models of capitalism. The similar complaints about working too hard and getting too little in return, if they’re able to get any jobs at all, sounds like an issue to the youth of today no matter where you are. Migration makes it better –but only slightly. Well, at least that’s what it seems from my perspective.

    I am watching Train and I am really enjoying it. I find it particularly striking that the lead character’s name is Do Won. It reminded me of the character in TKEM who’s real life name is Do Hwan. Both men have doppelgängers in other times and spaces. I want to pretend like I just discovered this, but I have the feeling that you guys mentioned it in a episode and I’m just telling you something that you told me already. I love how dramaland reference is it self in weird ways!

    Is there a video equivalent of the podcast that I’m not aware of?

    Keep up the good work ladies! Your recaps and analyses are such a bright light in these dark days for me!

    By the way, I am loving The Queen! I just finished it today and I have not laughed this much since a couple of kdramas ago. It is the saeguk for people who do not like saeguks, like myself. As a wannabe demographer, I’ve always found them completely unrealistic to the point of not being able to suspend my disbelief.

    “Why do they have old men? People were dying when they were in their 30s and 40s during that time period.”

    “Why are these actors and actresses pushing 30 with no kids? In that time, women would have probably been pregnant every year of their life With only one child surviving.”

    Best wishes, Chinyere

    Best wishes, Chinyere’s Apple Watch Sergio

    On Sat, Mar 20, 2021 at 2:41 PM Chinyere ‘Dr. Chi’ Osuji wrote:

    > Wait a minute! Is there a video version??? > > On Sat, Mar 20, 2021 at 1:53 PM Dramas Over Flowers comment-reply@wordpress.com> wrote: > >> Saya posted: ” Welcome to our special edition of What’s Up in Dramaland, >> with Professor CedarBough Saeji. We ask CedarBough to share her thoughts on >> the bullying scandals, how dramas compare with real life, and what the role >> of fandom is during times of moral crisis. ” >>

    Liked by 2 people

    1. No video versions for this one! =) We’re really happy you enjoyed this episode, Dr Chi! We tried to cover as much ground as we could since our guest had studied these topics for many years and we didn’t want to miss the opportunity to dig into her thoughts.
      Hell Joseon is definitely heartbreaking. And yes, Saya probably made that doppleganger comparison in Train in one of our episodes, but I’m always discovering things anew while watching dramas that my co-hosts have already observed and commented on, so absolutely enjoy the rush of making that connection. I would. XD
      Ha, I spent all of 5 minutes pondering those questions about Mr Queen and then decided I would much rather go with their flow. It was a great drama. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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