Our Nation: A Korean Punk Rock Community

The rise of a new youth subculture in the Republic of Korea is an outgrowth of dramatic changes occurring there in the 1990's. The country elected its first civilian president, it experienced new prosperity, and became increasingly exposed to Western influences. Young Koreans became exposed to the internet and a steady stream of new musical influences. Our Nation is a stunning portrayal of how Korean youth are using punk rock to find their voices in a rapidly changing culture.

Through the eyes of two young college age fans, we journey through the underground punk rock scene. The small club "Drug" features bands with names like Crying Nut, No Brain and Weeper, and the all-female band Supermarket. To Americans the flashing lights, stomping bodies, blaring sounds and angry incantations are nothing new. But seeing it in an Asian culture known for restraint raises many questions. Sociology professor Cho Hae Joang provides a socio-historical overview of the youth subcultures in Korea, and the emergence of consumer capitalism with the concomitant economic crisis of the late 90's. Our Nation gives air to a multiplicity of voices on issues such as the role of the school system in the lives of Korean youth, their relationships with their parents, and indeed the impact of globalization on the culture.

Related Subjects: 
The Internatinal Fest of Cinema and Technology, 2005
Association for Asian Studies, 2002
Chicago Asian American Showcase, 2002
New York Underground Film Festival, 2002
Seoul Punk Rock Film Festival, 2001

"The film, like the scene it sets out to document, is fast paced,youthful, stylish, and frenetic. It will hold and intrigue American youth audiences."
-Asian Educational Media Service, University of Illinois

"Overall, this is a good film that audiences from high school on up should enjoy. Recommended for music, popular culture, sociology, Asian studies."
-Robert Freeborn, Pennsylvania State University Educational Media Reviews Online

"Recommended for Asian studies collections and public libraries in communities with active Korean patronage."
-Library Journal


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