K-Drama and Korean Television Symposium

K-Drama and Korean Television Symposium

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), Preston, UK, is delighted to host a the K-Drama and Korean TV Symposium, which is devoted to scholarship on South Korean TV dramas and other TV formats.

Dates: Wednesday 5th June 2019 9:30 am to 6 pm. (check-in and drama-screening Tuesday 4th June from 5 pm). 

Key details: Accommodation (Tuesday 4th June), lunch and refreshments are provided for selected presenters.  Limited transport expenses for postgrad researchers.

Related Event: The K-Drama symposium is a pre-conference event taking place the day before the Korean Screen Cultures Conference at UCLan 6th to 7th June 2019.

K-Drama Symposium Call for Papers:

The K-Drama symposium aims to critically engage with issues related to the production, forms, themes, and global circulation and reception of contemporary Korean television shows, including TV-dramas, reality TV, variety shows, chat shows and comedy. It is timed to precede the Korean Screen Cultures Conference, which is also held at UCLan this year. Presenters will be invited to submit chapters to an edited collection that we aim to publish by the end of 2020.

In the decade since Chau and Iwabushi’s seminal collection, East Asian Pop Culture: Analysing the Korean Wave (2008), K-drama have diversified considerably in terms of genre and theme beyond the intricate romance narratives of early 2000s dramas. They now encompass new genres, such as hospital and gangster dramas, and incorporate changing themes, such as supernatural elements and pressing political issues. At the same time, the audiences and global circulation of K-drama continue to grow. Many K-dramas are easily available on on-demand media platforms, notably Netflix and Amazon Prime, and on a variety of web-sites, such as Viki. Other Korean TV formats have started to attract avid viewers all over the world, especially variety shows such as Running Man, Infinity Challenge, The Human Condition, The Return of Superman, and The Law of the Jungle. Despite K-drama’s global appeal, however, the domestic and regional context remains central to questions of production practice and cultural politics. For example, K-drama production practices have adapted to accommodate regional/Chinese audiences; China has restricted imports of South Korean cultural products; and K-dramas have responded in significant ways to the momentous shifts in South Korean politics in recent years.  Such developments in the field of Korean TV Studies raise a multitude of questions. Given that much previous scholarship on K-drama has privileged questions of regional reception, this symposium particularly encourages panels/papers on K-drama production practices; the changing genres, forms, and thematic concerns of K-drama and other TV formats; and questions of reception and appropriation of K-TV on global content platforms. Thus, we invite papers by established, early career and postgrad researchers on any topic related to the global consumption of Korean TV research, and especially welcome work on the following:

  • K-drama production practices
  • New drama genres
  • Changing thematic concerns in K-drama
  • The popularity of Korean TV formats beyond drama, such as variety shows
  • The consumption of dubbed/subtitles Korean TV products
  • The ‘translatability’ of Korean variety show/comedy
  • Questions of reception and appropriation of K-TV on global content platforms
  • K-drama/K-TV Fan studies
  • K-Pop/TV drama Stars and crossovers
  • Remaking Korean TV in other cultural markets
  • Platform distribution markets and practices
  • ‘Netflix original’ K-Drama/films
  • Platforms (e.g Netflix): Cultural gatekeeper or intercultural mediator?

Accommodations and Transport

Once your paper has been accepted by the organisers please note the following:

There is no registration fee at the K-Drama Symposium. We provide lunch, coffee and a conference dinner. The organizers will be able to provide accommodation to presenters whose papers have been accepted; (one night Tuesday 4th June 2019). A small fund will be made available to subsidise economy travel expenses for postgrad and independent researchers on a first-come-first-served basis.

Anyone wishing to book additional nights can place reservations for the Legacy Preston International Hotel for the reduced price of £70. Please let me know if you plan to do so as soon as possible after your acceptance at KdramaApplications@uclan.ac.uk


In your proposal, please copy, paste and answer the following questions:

  1. Are you a postgrad student?
  2. Would you like to book any additional nights at the Legacy Preston International Hotel (please indicate dates)
  3. Do you a have any dietary requirements
  4. Do you need a letter of invitation for visa purposes? (most people can get visa waivers I think)

The Deadline for proposals is: 21st February 2019.

Applicants will be notified of the result by 15th March 2019.

A complete paper of 5,500 - 6,000 words should be sent by 15th May 2019. Final drafts of book chapters by 1st September 2019.

Proposal format:

In your proposals - both for individual papers and panel proposals - please include your name, institutional affiliation, the title of the paper, an abstract of 300 words (for each paper and for the panel), and a 50-100 word biography of the author.

Please submit your proposal as a WORD doc file. Note that PDFs will not be accepted or considered.

The file name should follow the format: "K-Drama - <SURNAME> - abstract", e.g. 'K-Drama-JACKSON-abstract'. In the case of a panel use the surname of the chief organizer followed by 'panel name’ (please add a short version of your panel name here), e.g. 'K-Drama-KIM-Horror Drama-abstract').

Please send the abstract as an email attachment to Mark Plaice at KdramaApplications@uclan.ac.uk

The email subject should be the same as the file name.

All applicants will receive an email confirmation for receipt of their abstract within 5 working days. If you do not receive confirmation, please email.

For all enquiries, contact Mark Plaice at the above email.

Attending KSCC 2019 too?

The K-Drama Symposium is a pre-conference event linked to the Korean screen Cultures Conference 6th to 7th June 2019. See the conference page for the Call For Papers and full details of KSCC 2019.

Presenters may submit papers for the K-drama symposium and attend for one day, or may submit papers for both KSCC and K-Drama (i.e. two papers) and attend both events. Accommodating is provided for all presenters selected for the K-Drama Symposium.

KSCC attendees who do not present at the K-Drama symposium are welcome to attend the symposium. Accommodation will be provided for the evening of Wednesday 5th for those presenting at KSCC, but we cannot guarantee to cover accommodation for Tuesday 4th for those not presenting at the K-Drama symposium.