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Pop culture in East Asia


Pop culture in East Asia

The entertainment industry is huge in East Asia, which has caused it to developed a distinctive pop culture scene. Famous pop stars often perform at concerts which attract sell-out crowds. Hong Kong and Taiwan are the main centres of Chinese popular culture, with most famous singers and actors originating or based in the two territories. Due to the linguistic variation of the "Chinese language", in addition to Mandarin, songs may also be performed in Cantonese or Minnan. Due to stricter government controls, which include the banning of popular television programmes such as Super Girl, the pop culture scene is not as well developed in mainland China, though it is also slowly beginning to emerge, with several good quality wuxia series being produced in the mainland in recent times. South Korea is a relatively new comer to the international pop culture scene, though the hallyu or Korean wave phenomenon at the turn of the millenium has sent waves across much of the continent. Despite the language barriers, many famous Korean singers have almost always performed to sell-out crowds in other East Asian countries, and Korean soap operas carry a loyal following in many neighbouring countries. On the other hand, the pop culture scene is non-existent in North Korea, and only government propaganda is allowed to be broadcast in the mass media. Perhaps the pop culture scene in Japan needs no introduction, as most Westerners would already be familiar with it to some extent through games, comics (漫画 manga) and cartoons (アニメ anime). In addition, the music scene is also very vibrant, with famous singers like Ayumi Hamasaki and Koda Kumi making headlines in newspapers all over the world. A unique feature of pop culture in East Asia is the karaoke lounge, which was invented in Japan, but has since spread and is immensely popular throughout the region. Lounges vary from respectable to super-dodgy, with some geared for for groups of friends and colleagues getting together to sing their favourite songs and socialise, and others best known for extortionately priced booze and skimpily dressed hostesses who provide sexual services.

The Most Frequently Asked Travel Questions about East Asia


Where To Stay & Best Hotels in East Asia - updated Feb 2023

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East Asia Travel Guide from Wikitravel. Many thanks to all Wikitravel contributors. Text is available under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0, images are available under various licenses, see each image for details.

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