BTS and the Korean wave

BTS, the boyband from Korea that has recently been making headlines for the past year is one of the biggest sensations of the the gen-z generation. Their fans, collectively called ARMY, is growing every passing day. Their albums and their popularity has seemed to outweigh that of the Beatles, and that too for non-english music, is truly a feat.

Although BTS has been promoting the best of the messages through their songs such as self love and have talked about depression, sexualities and gender discrimination, there are a few cons to this too. Although the boys in the band are tanned compared to other celebrities in Korea, a country that values fair skin, the white washing of their skin in social media is a common phenomena. Jungkook, the maknae(youngest member of a band) also seems to be taking diet pills. The fact that their companies force them to look a certain way by either watching their weight or forcibly bleaching and colouring their hair, is in itself promoting self hate. If their music matters so much, why is it so important for all of them to look a certain way. Rigorous dance practice is one of the things K-pop is known for.

Often at concerts, some stars faint because of either anxiety or exhaustion. In a world that they are trying so hard to create, why is there even a space for these things to happen. They have talked about them not even being able to meet their family because of tight schedules. They even have to share rooms in dorms and on vacations. And it’s not just about bts. So many ex-idols have come about talking about the exploitation of their bodies that they had to go through, especially the women. Constantly being told you aren’t good enough, having to stay fit all the time, starve yourself sometimes to a point that you faint on stage, and having to wear makeup all the time is beyond ridiculous. So many idols talk about how these companies that they have contracts with take the lions share in the profits they make and the idols themselves are paid peanuts. In South Korea, there is an obsession with these celebrities and the public takes a keen interest in their lives. Being in a relationship is a strict no-no for many idols since it is stated in their contracts.

Even when celebrities date, it is often criticized by the public and called a scandal. Magazines such as dispatch can actually end their careers. It is cruel, to say the least to have to deal with these circumstances. Putting across unrealistic standards of beauty is extremely harmful. Most fans of K-pop are young girls that look at these stars and feel they need to look the same way, and this just adds to the insecurities they already have because of patriarchal practices. BTS and other K-pop although try to talk about the important stuff, it is important to have diversity in K-pop first, which will inevitably lead to conversation. A new K-pop group, called the z-girls and z-boys has been launched. The members are from different countries and showcase a lot of diversity. This, is a welcome change in the world of K-pop. There is a path being created for more opinions and for voices to be heard, and BTS is just one among them.

This Article is Written By : Drishti

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