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Love Generation: Affectivity, Desire and Popular Culture in Asia

Sat, June 25, 10:30am to 12:20pm, Shikokan (SK), Floor: 1F, 122

Session Submission Type: Roundtable Proposal Application


From nostalgic reminiscence of teenage puppy romance in films and television and endless production of candy-pop love songs to the enthusiastic display of affection by fan clubs on their celebrities, love seem to dominate the landscape of popular entertainment across Asia. Dismissed as the distractions of the culture industry in manufacturing an apolitical and domesticated desires, the notions of love and romance have been treated suspiciously for substituting affective fantasies for autonomous subjectivities. Often associated negatively with the realm of the infantile feminine in television soap operas, bubble-gum pop songs, pulp fiction and fandom, romantic literature stands in opposition to the masculinistic arena of film, experimental music, current affairs and advocacy. As such, despite its ubiquity, little attention remains paid to the discourses of love and romance in Asia’s popular culture. This proposed roundtable brings together an upcoming generation of scholars from the community of graduate students researching into this issue of romance through the diverse fields of Fandom Studies, Television Studies , Design Anthropology and Media Studies. Collectively, they have potential in providing greater agency, currency and history to what would be perceived as otherwise frivolous feminine undertakings. As stated in the guidelines, there will be five members and a chair for this proposed roundtable. It is hoped that more conference attendees and speakers can join in the discussion. Chaired by Dr Liew Kai Khiun, the discussants will cover the following: Ms Ng Shu Min, Chrys on the curating “romantic dramas” in film festivals in Asia, Ms Priscilla Grille on the transnational idolization of Korean pop stars in Latin America, Ms Yoo Min Kyung on the historical construction of domesticity and modern love in South Korean television during the Cold War, Ms Hattie Liew on mobilizational capacity of fan clubs in Asia, and Mr Nicholas Teo on the ethnographic design considerations of social surveys to gauge societal perceptions of love in Singapore. It is hoped that more conference attendees and speakers can join in the discussion.

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