USJ Volume III

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U SJ

Undergraduate Sociology Journal 2019-2020 VOLUME III

Undergraduate Sociology Students’ Union University of Toronto



Undergraduate Sociology Journal Volume III 2020

Undergraduate Sociology Students’ Union | University of Toronto 2020 Undergradutate Sociology Journal This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

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Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

EDITOR’S NOTE Dear readers, I am honoured to present to you the third volume of the Undergraduate Sociology Journal (USJ). In this volume, the vast and salient nature of sociology is highlighted, as the authors explore topics so relevant to our current world. These papers illuminate the importance of the sociology of and sociology in every aspect of life, from climate change to heavy metal. With the current challenges surrounding Covid-19, it is crucial that we all follow the guidelines of the health officials wherever we are, which may mean staying home and possibly finding some form of respite through the pages of this journal. We hope the papers in this volume will take you on a journey of critical analysis, self-reflection, and varied discovery as you read. I would like to thank all those who made Volume III of the USJ possible. Thank you to our copy and design editors for dedicating so much time and zeal to putting this journal together, even through these challenging times. Thank you to our Faculty Advisor, Dr. Scott Schieman, for your time and invaluable insights. Thank you to Jess Kim and Vicky Zhou, the Co-Presidents of USSU, for your generous support through the production of this journal. Thank you to those who submitted their work for review, and congratulations to the contributors for being published. Lastly, thank you to our readers. Without you, we would not be able to inspire discussions on our social world in this way. Stay safe and healthy, and enjoy the journey. Sincerely, Dumkelechi Aligwekwe Editor-in-Chief, Undergraduate Sociology Journal (USJ)

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EDITORIAL BOARD EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Dumkelechi Aligwekwe

COPY EDITORS Debasmita Bhattacharya Nixin Chen Danielle Vaughn-Bonas Hadiyyah Kuma Jada Charles Meaghan Derby Sophie Chase

DESIGN EDITOR Yaoli Liu

FACULTY ADVISOR Dr. Scott Schieman

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Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

TABLE OF CONTENTS 4

Editor’s Note

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Editorial Board

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Table of Contents

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The Family Unfriendly City: The Impact of Public Funding Cuts Against Growing Demand for Child Care in Toronto Ariel Kenny

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The Basketball Diaries: A Case Study of The National Basket ball Association and Political Repression by China Vinuja Sritharan

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Dawn of The Black Hearts: Contextualising Fascism in Second Wave Norwegian Black Metal Agha Saadaf

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The Climate Change Social (Media) Movement Ariel Kenny

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Race, Class, and Gender: The #Metoo Movement & Stigma Victoria Barclay

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Transnational Diplomacy and The Korean Wave Manal Choudhry

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Letter from USSU

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THE FAMILY UNFRIENDLY CITY: THE IMPACT OF PUBLIC FUNDING CUTS AGAINST GROWING DEMAND FOR CHILD CARE IN TORONTO ARIEL KENNY

ABSTRACT This article reviews the state of Toronto’s crowded and unregulated child care market in light of the recent 2019-2020 provincial budget cuts that have indefinitely stalled projects to increase the number of licensed daycare spaces in the city. References to relevant studies, government survey data, and Ontario child care policies depict how these cuts have adversely affected low-income families’ already limited access to subsidized and/or quality child care while raising the cost of centre-based child care overall. Further discussion on these impacts forward the argument that Toronto’s underfunded child care market creates a “family unfriendly” city that is ill-equipped to serve families in need, given that the low vacancy rate for regulated child care centres renders subsidies ineffectual if not useless for qualifying families. The benefits of a universal child care system for financially vulnerable families and the Canadian economy are briefly discussed as an alternative, though the matter demands further study. KEYWORDS: child care, Toronto, government subsidies INTRODUCTION The steady rise in women’s employment rates and lone-parent Canadian families over the past century have increased the demand for child care (Bushnik 2006). However, government funding to increase the availability and affordability of child care options for families has been limited. In Ontario, the child care market is largely unregulated by the government, leaving licensed and unlicensed child care centres and home providers to set their daily fees as they see fit. The costs of child care, like any other market, are inflated due to low supply and high market demand. For low-income parents who cannot afford these high, market-driven costs, the Ontario government offers subsidies provided that qualifying families Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

access care from one of the province’s licensed child care providers—commercial centres and family homes that are subject to standards of care under the 2014 Child Care and Early Years Act. The Ontario government additionally funds the operating costs of these licensed centres, and in doing so, they control the supply of licensed child care spaces for families in need. However, for cities like Toronto that have a significantly large population of children requesting access to these licensed spaces (let alone subsidized spaces,) this demand can be difficult to meet. June 2019, the Toronto City Council confirmed that the 2019-2020 provincial budget cuts for publicly funded child care would indefinitely stall 51 planned 7


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 projects in the city, totalling at a loss of over 3000 new spaces for children in need of care (Carbone 2019). More specifically, this public funding would have gone towards licensed care centres and family homes that can provide subsidized child care for low-income families. Due to these budget cuts, the children of these families are now being added to Toronto’s growing waitlist of over 15,000 children, that are waiting for vacancies in licensed care centres (Baxter-Trahair 2017). This is a staggering number that calls into question where these waitlisted parents and caregivers can obtain care otherwise. Given the conflicts that limited child care spaces may pose for families in need, this paper explores how cutting public funding to increase licensed child care spaces impacts families’ access to alternative care options in Toronto. In the context of this paper, child care is defined as nonparental care offered by centres and family homes, given that these providers receive the provincial funding in question. The families of concern to this inquiry are low- to mid-income families that may qualify for or need subsidized child care. Although high-income families in Toronto also use child care centres, they are better able to afford care alternatives such as nannies and are therefore not as reliant on public funding (Macdonald and Friendly 2018; Fletcher 2015). Additionally, the need for public funding will only be examined for its role in increasing the number of licensed child care spaces available in Toronto rather than the distribution of, or amount provided by subsidies. As such, attention will be directed to how the number of spaces affects demand and consequently market costs for child care in Toronto. The course of this inquiry will delve into the nature of Ontario’s child care market, and call into question

8 its unregulated pricing and lack of quality assurance for unlicensed child care centres and family home care providers (White et al. 2019; Baxter-Trahair 2017). Upon evaluating the role of subsidies within this market, I will argue that the cuts to funding new licensed child care spaces significantly affect lowas well as middle-income families’ ability to afford child care, demonstrating its broader domino effect on demand in the Toronto child care market. In doing so, I will demonstrate how subsidies are ineffectual and potentially even useless for low-income families, due to these families’ restricted access to the licensed care centres where their subsidies are eligible. To conclude, I will present the implications of this restricted access to child care for working mothers while additionally considering alternative approaches to publicly funded child care and their potential gains for both low-income families and the provincial government. Through my review of the following literature, I hope to offer insight into how Toronto is made into a “family unfriendly” city through its competitive child care market, and how this can potentially be remedied with increased federal and provincial funding to the benefit of low- and midincome families. CHILD CARE IN TORONTO Licensed child care centres and family home care providers are the primary recipients of public child care funding and represent the first and third most common types of child care used in Toronto, respectively (Fletcher 2015; Bushnik 2006). Lowincome families who are eligible for subsidies can only redeem them from these licensed child care providers. Accordingly, subsidized children take up 45.5% of spaces in licensed centres and about 71% of spaces in licensed family home care in Toronto (Cleveland et al. 2016).


Table 1

A large proportion of these spaces serve subsidized families, however, these statistics do not account for all the families that qualify for subsidies, or those who arguably should. A study of child care demand conducted by Toronto Children’s Services argues that given current average fees, up to 70% of Toronto families should be eligible for some amount of fee subsidy—indicating a far greater need for subsidized care than assumed by the mere 12% of families that receive it (Cleveland et al. 2016). The barriers to child care for these families in need—aside from limited provincial funding towards expanding subsidies—can be attributed to the inaccessibility of licensed child care facilities in terms of price and vacancies. Space Availability The expansion of licensed child care spaces across Canada has been steadily decreasing since 2004 (Friendly and Beach 2013). As of 2017, Toronto only held enough licensed spaces to accommodate about 27% of children aged 0-4, a figure which ha barely increased as of 2019 (Cleveland 2018; Baxter-Trahair 2017). This rate of space expansion is evidently unable to match Ontario’s projected population of young children, which predicts an increase of about 28% more children aged 0-4 from 2019 to 2029 alone Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

(Ontario Ministry of Finance 2019). As such, licensed child care vacancies continue to shrink for the lowto mid-income families in Toronto who compete for spaces, and of the available spaces, their costs are prohibitively expensive. Cost of Care Ontario, unlike most Canadian provinces, does not limit the cost of daily child care (Macdonald and Friendly 2018). The fees for licensed child care are also not uniform across the province—not even within regions or municipalities. The results of the Ontario Ministry of Education’s Child Care Operators’ Survey of 2017 demonstrates this wide variance across regions (Table 1 and Table 2). In Toronto, the median infant fee for licensed centre care (Table 1) was $85 per day, while licensed family home care (Table 2) was marginally cheaper at $51.80 per day. Toronto Children’s Services confirms the high price of childcare in Toronto in their 2016 survey, which finds licensed child care to be unaffordable for over 75% of the city’s families (Cleveland et al. 2016). These astronomical costs and limited spaces prompt the question of where families—particularly low income and potentially subsidy-qualifying families—can 9


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Table 2

obtain their child care otherwise. ACCESSING LICENSED CARE As discussed, low-income parents who qualify for a child care subsidy in Toronto can apply it towards accessing licensed child care centres or licensed family home care. However, not all of these qualifying families can access care due to the limited number of spaces, as well as the fact that not all child care centres provide services to subsidized children (Cleveland 2018). This is especially problematic, given that families can only qualify for child care subsidies after their children are enrolled in a licensed child care program. This means that even families who qualify for full child care funding at licensed centres may not receive it due to their inability to secure a space in the first place. The lack of data on unlicensed child care providers means that their quality is also under-researched and questionable when compared to the standards imposed on licensed providers (White et al. 2019; Cleveland et al. 2008; Beach et al. 1998). Under the 2014 Child Care and Early Years Act, licensed care centres require their staff to have criminal reference checks and first aid certification, as well as to provide

parents reports of any accident that could affect the well-being of their child. Unlicensed centres are not subject to any of these operating requirements. Their only restriction is that they are limited to the supervision of one less child than licensed centres. While the metrics of child care quality are subject to debate outside the scope of this paper, this deregulation suggests that the quality of unlicensed child care is subpar, especially given findings that even licensed child care does not optimally develop children’s skills (Cleveland et al. 2008). AFFORDING UNLICENSED CARE Though the quality may be questionable, unlicensed care may be the only available option for low- to mid-income families, provided they can secure and afford a space. The average cost of unlicensed care is unknown, though an older study conducted by Beach et al. (1998) finds that they are generally cheaper than licensed care. However, given that Ontario does not limit daily child care costs (as every child care provider is responsible for setting their own fees,) we can assume that they are similarly market-priced. Additionally, child care subsidies cannot be applied to unlicensed child care as they are only applicable to licensed care providers (Cleveland et al. 2018).


This means that low-income families who would otherwise be eligible for subsidies for licensed child care must pay the full cost of unlicensed care. Families can, however, still deduct some of their child care expenses from their taxes under the Child Care Expense Deduction provision by requesting receipts from their unlicensed providers. As such, low-income families that are unable to access their subsidized, licensed child care spaces may need to compete with other low-, mid-, and even high-income families for spaces in unlicensed care centres and homes without any subsidies to help them cover the costs. This competitive demand for spaces in the Toronto child care market prompts commercial child care centres to raise their rates, further pushing low-income families out of the child care bidding wars and challenging mid-income families to bear the higher cost. THE ALTERNATIVE TO THE ALTERNATIVE For families who cannot afford these sky-rocketed, high-demand market rates, an alternative price is often shouldered by mothers. A Canadian study conducted by Cleveland, Gunderson and Hyatt (1996) finds that a 10% increase in the expected price of child care correlates with a 3.9% reduction in the probability that a mother will engage in paid work. A similar study conducted by Powell (1997) suggests that a 10% increase in child care costs corresponds with a 3.2% decrease in the number of paid hours that mothers work. Additionally, a 10% rise in child care fees results in an 11% reduction in the probability that a mother will purchase child care, shifting that care work onto themselves or to unpaid, informal networks of family and friends (Cleveland et al. 1996). Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

Consequently, mothers in Toronto who cannot secure subsidized child care spaces nor afford unlicensed alternatives are more likely to exit the labour market. These child care funding cuts, therefore, allow the Ontario government to reproduce a socio-economic context that pressures women to limit employment in order to care for children under the guise of “choice,” when the option to access subsidized care is not even truly available (Kershaw 2004). DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION As indicated by these constraints, the high demand and high prices that plague Toronto’s child care market amidst a lack of publicly funded spaces means that child placements are more influenced by availability and cost rather than parental preferences. The rarity of subsidized vacancies, therefore, pushes Toronto’s low-income families into the city’s exorbitantly priced child care market, which drives up demand and, consequently, market prices. While this means that low-income families are hit the hardest by the lack of licensed spaces, their added demand on the child care market raises costs that affect mid-income families’ access to child care as well. For families who cannot afford this care, child care options are limited to either submitting their name to the 15,000-strong waitlist for licensed care, paying the full cost of unlicensed care (that is of dubious quality,) finding unpaid family caregivers, or resigning from the workforce to care for children at home—the lattermost option being most often taken by low-income mothers (Kershaw 2004). This effect exacerbates class divides as low-income women who care for their children at home in lieu of child care, even if only part-time, may sacrifice their income and career mobility with long-term consequences 11


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 on their future earnings potential and economic independence. It is therefore argued that this marketdriven approach to child care that sparingly offers subsidies for only the most deserving families is inadequate, given that there are limited licensed spaces in which families can redeem them. However, the solution to this problem is more complicated than expanding the amount of licensed child care spaces. In order to serve 50% of 0-4-year-olds in Toronto, the number of subsidies offered would need to increase as spaces increase (Baxter-Trahair 2017). Providing affordable and accessible child care options, therefore, requires a considerably large budget that can account for the cost of additional subsidies, securing new locations for centres, staffing them with more child care workers, and paying them fair wages (Goelman et al. 2006). Even so, without capping the daily cost of child care as other provinces have done, Ontario’s child care budget would need to constantly play catch-up with its municipalities’ market prices. As an alternative, Ontario could divert funds towards providing universal child care, which many scholars advocate (Michel and Mahon 2002). While a daunting prospect for policymakers, the feat may not be impossible, and its benefits could outweigh the costs. In fact, a cost-benefit analysis for a universal, Canada-wide child care system for children ages 2-5 has been conducted by Cleveland and Krashinsky (1998). Looking at federal and provincial spending in 1997, their investigation estimates that a national, universal child care program would cost $5.3 billion more per year but later generate $10.5 billion in annual benefits due to increased female labour force participation as well as better early childhood development outcomes due to improved access to and quality of care—a considerable net gain for the Canadian economy. Whether the provincial or federal

12 government would be able or willing to provide such a service to the benefit of Canadian families and the national economy remains to be seen. As it is now, the Ontario government’s minimal involvement and investment in child care will continue to push lowto mid-income families into Toronto’s competitive and costly market at the expense of their finances, careers, and the overall quality of care for their children.


REFERENCES Baxter-Trahair, Elaine. 2017. Toronto’s Licensed Child Care Growth Strategy for children under 4 2017-2016. Toronto: Children’s Services. Beach, Jane, Jane Bertrand, and Gordon Cleveland. 1998. Our Child Care Workforce: From Recognition to Remuneration. Main Report for the Child Care Sector Study Steering Committee. Ottawa: HRDC Bushnik, Tracey. 2006. Child care in Canada. Children and youth research paper series. Carbone, Giuliana. 2019. Children’s Services Report on 2019 Provincial and Federal Budgets. Toronto: Community and Social Services. Cleveland, Gordon. 2018. “Affordable For All: Making Licensed Child Care Affordable in Ontario.” Cleveland Consulting. Retrieved December 18, 2019. (http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/ childcare/affordable-for-all-en.pdf). Cleveland, Gordon, Barry Forer, Douglas Hyatt, Christa Japel, and Michael Krashinsky. 2008. “New Evidence about Child Care in Canada: Use Patterns, Affordability and Quality.” IRPP Choices 14(12). Cleveland, Gordon, and Michael Krashinsky. 1998. The Benefits And Costs Of Good Child Care: The economic rationale for public investment in young children. Department of Economics, University of Toronto at Scarborough. Cleveland, G., Gunderson, M. & Hyatt, D. 1996. “Child care costs and the employment decisions of women: Canadian evidence.” Canadian Journal of Economics 29:132-151. Fletcher, Brooke Alida. 2015. “Examining Factors Associated with Child Care Utilization Patterns in a Canadian Urban Setting and Understanding the Association Between Child Care Ratios and Child Outcomes.” Ph.D. dissertation, Department of Applied Psychology and Human Development, University of Toronto. Friendly, Martha and Jane Beach. 2013. The State of Early Childhood Education and Care in Canada 2010: Trends and Analysis. Childcare Resource and Research Unit. Goelman, Hillel, Barry Forer, Paul Kershawa, Gillian Doherty, Donna Lero, Annette LaGrang. 2006. “Towards a predictive model of quality in Canadian child care centers.” Early Childhood Research Quarterly 21(3):280–295. Kershaw, Paul W. 2004. “‘Choice’ discourse in BC child care: distancing policy from research.” Canadian Journal of Political Science, 37(4):927-95. Macdonald, David and Martha Friendly. 2018. Developmental Milestones: Child care fees in Canada’s big cities 2018. Canadian Centre for Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

Policy Alternatives. Michel, Sonya, and Rianne Mahon. 2002. “Dual Earner Families Caught in a Liberal Welfare Regime? The Politics of Child Care Policy in Canada.” Pp. 191-210 in Child Care Policy at the Crossroads: Gender and Welfare State Restructuring. New York: Routledge. Ontario Ministry of Finance. 2019. Ontario Population Projections, 2018–2046. Toronto: Queen’s Printer for Ontario. Ontario Ministry of Education. 2017. Child Care Operators’ Survey of 2017. Toronto: Queen’s Printer for Ontario. Powell, L. M. 1997. “The impact of child care costs on the labour supply of married mothers: Evidence from Canada.” Canadian Journal of Economics 30:577-594. Varmuza, Petr, Michal Perlman, and Linda A. White. 2019. “Understanding early childhood education and care utilization in Canada: implications for demand and oversight.” International Journal of Child Care and Education Policy 13:7. White, Linda A., Michal Perlman, Adrienne Davidson, and Erica Rayment. 2019. “Risk perception, regulation, and unlicensed child care: lessons from Ontario, Canada.” Journal of Risk Research 22(7):878-896.

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THE BASKETBALL DIARIES: A CASE STUDY OF THE NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION AND POLITICAL REPRESSION BY CHINA VINUJA SRITHARAN ABSTRACT In 2019, the unrest of citizens in Hong Kong caught the attention of numerous influential individuals and corporations. Chinese officials perceived the solidarity shown by Daryl Morey, general manager of the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Houston Rockets, towards protesting students as demeaning and a test to their openly conservative values. Moreover, Morey’s actions have stepped into China’s political realm. The NBA contemplated a controversial choice between saving their strong corporate relationship with China or upholding American values concerning freedom of speech. This paper analyzes these events alongside the concepts of transnationalism and globalization to thoroughly understand the emergence of the NBA’s global empire, policies of the post-Maoist era liberalizing Chinese markets, and the effects of permanent trade status changes by the Clinton administration in the U.S. The latter theme’s unpredicted consequences, specifically Chinese authoritarianism directed through online surveillance, will be examined to discuss the probability of China’s financial and corporate losses. More broadly, our study showcases how the globalization of markets may not always equal the liberalization of a state’s citizens. KEYWORDS: China, NBA, transnationalism, globalization INTRODUCTION Through globalization and transnational networks, the National Basketball Association (NBA), situated in America, has found fan bases and corporate partners worldwide. Such relations have opened the organization to profits, labour, and competitive markets in the world’s largest manufacturing powerhouse: China. However, recent comments by NBA officials have paired culture and politics together to generate critiques against American intervention and Chinese oppression. This essay will analyze the NBA-China case study to answer a deeper question: How does China’s strict governmental regulations on the internet and media affect the penetration of ideas

from American institutions? We will comprehend the effects of the case by examining transnationalism, globalization, the Clinton era of permanent trade agreements, China’s authoritative use of technology, and its attempts to silence international actors. THE NBA, CHINA, AND HONG KONG PROTESTS Recent relations between the NBA and China have increased discussions about foreign influence on social and political spheres. It started with a tweet from the General Manager of the Houston Rockets, Daryl Morey, who showed solidarity with protestors in Hong Kong. The tweet consisted of an image


that read “FIGHT FOR FREEDOM STAND WITH HONG KONG,” which has since been deleted1. These protestors fought a bill labelled “Fugitive Offenders Amendment,” allowing local authorities to detain and extradite criminal runaways to states with no existing extradition laws for China (“The Hong Kong protests,” 2019). Their primary concern was the overstepping of federal jurisdiction and the mistreatment of civil liberties. Since Hong Kong is known to be under a “one country, two systems” arrangement, the bill threatened the limited autonomy it had (Wong and Mak 2019). Although the bill was withdrawn completely, protestors continued to fight for other demands such as democratic institutions and investigations into police brutality. The protests took place from June to November of 2019, with calmness emerging near the end due to district council elections (Griffiths 2019). The Chinese government did not welcome the remarks from Morey. The general manager released an apology in English, alongside the Houston Rockets. However, the translation of the apology did not suffice. Shortly after, the commissioner of the NBA, Adam Silver, released a statement displaying the NBA’s priority to uphold “values of equality, respect, and freedom of expression” and solidarity with the comments of Morey (Shih 2019). In response, China Central Television, the Chinese government’s most influential and controlled media platform, announced decisions to withhold broadcasts of NBA games for the following week as a countermove (Shih 2019). The case demonstrates how the corporation’s attempts to protect American freedoms and values cause China to tighten its restrictions on foreign political influence. Most importantly, the circumstances around this international exchange show the effects 1

Daryl Morey’s Twitter page, https://twitter.com/dmorey

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of transnationalism. TRANSNATIONALISM Transnationalism is a popular concept when focusing on the relations between various states. Blanc, Bach, and Schiller (1995) claim transnationalism as cultural, social, and economic crossings over nationstate boundaries. Transnationalism strains state boundaries as various activities become enabled for crossing (Blanc et al. 1995). The scholars identify the importance of permanence and institutionalization when analyzing effective transnationalism. Firms who incorporate nationality-based practices into their structure are more efficient in entrenching their business in foreign states. The NBA stands as an example, where its mission of sportsmanship has been extended to loyal fans in China. Along with their successful business model came basketball culture, which Chinese fans quickly adopted. As Blanc, Bach, and Schiller suggest, modern media and communication quickly relay these national structures and cultural beliefs transnationally. Similar to their American counterparts, Chinese NBA fans religiously watch basketball, buy merchandise from basketball stars who partner with global apparel brands, and stay updated on all NBA-related highlights using online platforms. If we measure the efficacy of the NBA using transnationalism, we can label the corporation as highly successful. The organization now operates on an international scale and impacts one of the largest global powerhouses. Most importantly, the successful presence of an American corporation in China and its impact on public opinion is a point of discussion. As Blanc, Bach, and Schiller may reason, the NBA has created a social, and now political, spatiality within an authoritative state, impacting its control over public opinion. 15


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 GLOBALIZATION Globalization has affected the networks built between China and the United States. Neo-liberalism’s prominence during the 1980s internationally promoted a free market. In China, the economy was ruled by Maoist figures until this period. PostMaoist reform aimed to liberate the market from the state and increase the accumulation of capital and institutional strategies were promoted in hopes of successfully assimilating into the global economy (So 2007). Strategies used included reorganizing local communes to become entrepreneurial hubs, creating a new labour market and roles for workers, fiscal decentralization of the state, privatization and independence of corporations, and commodification of human services (So 2007). However, problems that arose with a shift to neoliberalism, such as labour protests and influence by foreign beliefs, were recognized by the Chinese government as destabilizing threats. Globalization added to the need for government-based political control in China. This included weakening the influence of other states, especially those who were beginning to have strong economic relations with the regime. THE EFFECTS OF ‘PERMANENT NORMAL TRADE RELATIONS’ WITH CHINA The United States has a controversial history with the state of China spanning over many years, heightened by the changes introduced by Bill Clinton and his administration. In 1999, the Clinton administration reached an agreement with the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to support their succession into the World Trade Organization (Osius 2000). Following this, the United States began establishing permanent normal trade relations with the PRC. This agreement was an economic policy measure, impacting China through integration into international, economic,

16 and environmental institutions and security (Osius 2001). The more integrated China became, the more leverage the United States would have over controlling the country’s international conduct. At the time, Clinton celebrated the bill by arguing that the economic freedom cherished by democracy would “improve respect for fundamental human rights and encourage political reform” (“U.S. Enacts Law,” 2001:146). The Clinton administration was in search of a partner state which would be prosperous and assimilative instead of a divided state. The growing technology sector was one of the traits promoted to give greater political freedom to China. However, this saviour complex-type policy, with a strong belief in America’s responsibility to save foreign countries, had the opposite effect. Globalization and the adjustments made to China’s normal trade relations with America shifted the government’s presence in the everyday life of citizens. Strengthened trade relations between the USA and China allowed the latter to obtain further international resources needed to develop their technological sector into one which surveils and censors. The internet and other modern communication technology solidified authoritarianism in China. Some scholars report that the more assertive state of China caused by its introduction into the international market is a product of a decades-long strategy to replace America as a leading global power (Inkster 2016). Thus, the Clinton era drew many setbacks. The internet was a highly anticipated resource in China as Clinton announced America’s “information super-highway” concept in 1993. The U.S. pushed telecommunications as a central precondition to their relationship (Hong 2017). China updated its export-driven economy to include internet-based


products and services. However, their updates using modern technology included building a widespread surveillance system. During the early 2000s, as China introduced new legislation on counterterrorism, national security, and cybersecurity, transnational information-technology (IT) companies were required to store data for government use (Inkster 2016). As these changes emerged, the underestimation of how China would use their technology sector also understated their ability to build a censored version of the internet. CHINA’S AUTHORITATIVE USE OF ONLINE PLATFORMS The incumbent Chinese Communist Party consistently created laws regarding the control of online information to track the creation and dissemination of content. Officials promoted the creation, use, and study of the internet and its content widely, but constraints were placed to ensure that online platforms did not circulate threats against the state (Roberts 2018). The wide-ranging list of keywords given to China’s security services allowed them to take action against individuals whom the state wished to silence (Inkster 2016). The state also blocked western social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter and redirected all social-media commentary through home-grown platforms such as “Sina Weibo” and “WeChat.” However, not all citizens are aware of the censorship of online engagement. A 2015 study analyzed the opinions of Chinese internet users’ experiences with online censorship, reporting that 70% of respondents were aware of the censorship taking place online, while the rest reported no awareness or did not respond (Wang & Mark 2015:15). The Great Firewall, a digital tool used to block government indicated websites from Chinese citizens, upholds the state’s authoritative mandate. Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

CHINESE APPEASEMENT OR AMERICAN VALUES? During the beginning of Clinton’s objective to move western technology to Pacific states, he questioned China’s crackdown on the internet. He believed that China was putting itself in a difficult situation as it strived for online control (Yan 2015). With China’s current societal structure and the ongoing clash with the NBA, Clinton’s thoughts can be presumed wrong. China has used the internet to establish its own surveillance system on its citizens. More importantly, globalized ideas are silenced to ensure steady control over Chinese societal views. Globalization of the internet lets China export censorship of foreign and cultural influences. The popularity of basketball in China was seen as non-threatening in the past. The NBA and China have a reciprocal relationship where loyal fans, investors, and the maximization of profits is provided. However, Morey’s tweet was unexpected. The censoring of the tweet, cancellation of broadcasted games, and remarks from the government reveal the extent to which China allows foreign political influence to permeate through transnational borders. America was divided on this issue. As the Rockets provided an apology to appease their Chinese investors, American politicians supporting free speech called out the NBA for prioritizing profits over human rights (Yglesias 2019). Since the introduction of globalization and transnational business deals, international corporations have implemented their practices using safe methods to satisfy the economic and political spheres of China. In return, they were able to access Chinese markets which include cheap labour and strong network ties. Now, the NBA’s attempts to protect the rights of American citizens 17


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 may cost it business with its Chinese fan base. China’s practice of intervening in transnational communication, especially when foreign content creators are attempting to reach the Chinese public, helps promote its nationalist-based narrative. Other than keeping its public domain safe from international threats at an early stage, China has also pushed a large, American corporation to silence one of its employees in their own country. Overall, the NBA-China debacle proves to scholars studying transnationalism that globalization does not always equal liberalization to all people. As we have studied, the expansion of technology has allowed China to build a repressive state which assimilates its population into a nationalist mindset. This practice of censorship ensures public solidarity when threatened by foreign beliefs and institutions. When analyzing this case study, it is important to understand the repercussions of censorship in the transnational realm. The Republic of China and similarly governed states are adamant about controlling information streamed through online platforms to convey a specific narrative to the public. Its priority of controlling the social and political stability of its state alienates them from foreign influence. China’s quick participation in the international market following its agreement to begin permanent normal trade relations with America gave them the technological exposure needed to “modernize” faster. However, democracy was not on China’s political agenda. Globalization allowed China modern technology to regulate its institutions and citizens, increasing its ability to move the state along a collective path with little room for criticism. China and U.S. relations are a popular transnational link to study as well. Jett believes globalization

18 erased the significance of borders and therefore, the significance of foreign policy, such as the permanent trade agreement (2008). Jett claims that successful foreign policy protects American interests, making citizens feel secure. However, power and persuasion were missing from Clinton’s push for China to democratize (Jett 2008). The current NBA controversy showcases how prior American foreign policy has backfired, causing social and political issues with one of its largest economic partners today. Darryl Morey’s online opinions provide an enhanced look into China’s ability to sway the operation of international corporations according to its advantage. CONCLUSION As previously mentioned, corporations that instill national values into their business mandates have higher chances of being successful in foreign domains as they introduce consumers to new sets of beliefs. In contrast, the constant remarks made by actors in the NBA may put their success at further risk. Managing players and officials as cultural carriers of American values threatens the globalization of the NBA. When studying transnationalism, globalization, and economic success, the roles of actors involved and their ability to provide political commentary are vital considerations. It is important to understand how politics exist within economic, social, and cultural institutions, which further creates expectations for actors in each realm to publicize their political views, similar to the actions of Morey. As the NBA becomes another actor restricted from penetrating China’s societal fabric, we can predict that China will analyze its relationship with the organization more closely moving forward. America’s minor attempts to intervene in the Hong Kong protests may


be portrayed as supporting freedom for the people, but instead, trigger economic setbacks and cuts to corporate ties. REFERENCES Blanc, Cristina S., Linda Basch, and Nina G. Schiller. 1995. “Transnationalism, Nation-States, and Culture.” Current Anthropology, 36(4): 683-686. Griffiths, James. 2019. “Hong Kongers show not only the depths of their discontent, but also their power.” CNN, November 25. Retrieved November 27, 2019 (https://www.cnn. com/2019/11/25/asia/hong-kong-district-councilelections-protests-intl-hnk/index.html) Inkster, Nigel. 2006. China’s Cyber Power. London, U.K. Routledge. Jett, Dennis Coleman. 2008. Why American Foreign Policy Fails: Unsafe at Home and Despised Abroad. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan. Osius, Ted. 2001. Legacy of the Clinton-Gore Administration’s China Policy. Asian Affairs 28(3): 125-134. Roberts, Margaret E. 2018. Censored: Distraction and Diversion Inside China’s Great Firewall. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Shih, Gerry. 2019. “Chinese State TV cancels broadcasts of NBA preseason games and sponsors drop out in dispute over Hong Kong comments.” The Washington Post, October 8. Retrieved November 27, 2019 (https://www. washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/chinesestate-tv-cancels-broadcasts-of-nba-preseasongames-and-sponsors-drop-out-in-dispute-overhong-kong-comments/2019/10/08/28f9dfd4e9b8-11e9-bafb-da248f8d5734_story.html) So, Alvin. 2007. Globalization and the Transition from Neoliberal Capitalism to State Developmentalism in China. International Review of Modern Sociology, 33: 61-76. 2019. “The Hong Kong protests explained in 100 and 500 words.” BBC News, November 28. Retrieved November 27, 2019 (https://www.bbc. com/news/world-asia-china-49317695). 2001. U.S. Enacts Law on Normalizing Trade Relations with China. The American Journal of International Law 95(1):146. Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

Wang, Dakuo and Gloria Mark. 2015 “Internet Censorship in China: Examining User Awareness and Attitudes.” ACM Transactions on ComputerHuman Interaction, 22(6): 1-22. Wong, Brian and John Mak. 2019. “One country, two systems’ is still the best model for Hong Kong, but it badly needs reform”. TIME USA. October 30. Retrieved March 20, 2020 (https:// time.com/5713715/hong-kong-one-country-twosystems-failure/) Yan, Mei Ning. 2015. “The Impact of New Media on Freedom of Expression in China and the Regulatory Responses.” Pp. 381-408 in Free Speech and Censorship Around the Globe, edited by Peter Molnar. Budapest: CEU Press. Yglesias, Matthew. 2019. “The raging controversy over the NBA, China, and the Hong Kong protests, explained.” Vox, October 7. Retrieved November 29, 2019 (https://www.vox. com/2019/10/7/20902700/daryl-morey-tweetchina-nba-hong-kong)

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DAWN OF THE BLACK HEARTS: CONTEXTUALISING FASCISM IN SECOND WAVE NORWEGIAN BLACK METAL AGHA SAADAF

ABSTRACT In this paper, I analyze the overlap between fascist ideology and subcultural values in Norway’s black metal scene in the 1990s. I argue that the glorification of strength and domination within the scene is reinforced by similar far-right beliefs as a form of resistance to “bourgeois Christian capitalist” hegemonies present at the time in Norway, perpetuated through the music itself. The historical context of Norwegian cultural power dynamics, the use of music as a medium to perpetuate political ideals, and the ideological adherence to “practicing” black metal off-stage through criminal action by notable figures in the Norwegian black metal subculture, are studied to establish a “pagan” identity within the genre and the fascist beliefs extolled as a rebellion from Christianity and capitalism. KEYWORDS: Norwegian black metal, fascism, subcultures, music INTRODUCTION In the 1990s, the winter landscape of Norway was struck by a series of church burnings and violent crimes perpetrated by members of the underground black metal scene. A subgenre of heavy metal, with sonic roots in bands like Venom and Bathory, the Second Wave of Norwegian black metal is characterized by harsh wailing vocals, highly distorted tremolo-picked dissonant triads, rapidfire “blast-beat” drumming, low-quality recording, and often violent occult imagery. More than a genre, members of the Norwegian black metal scene practice the music and its defiant culture as a lifestyle, one in which strength and violence are valued in retaliation to what is perceived as Christian domination and bourgeois hypocrisy. Additionally, many major figures in this controversial scene also

espouse far-right and fascist ideals of nationalism and individual strength as integral to the culture of the music in response to these larger hegemonies. Thus, in this paper, I aim to contextualize the recurring trend of violent and fascist ideology within the black metal subculture by arguing that the overlap between the music and far-right belief stems from values of “strength” as rebellious reactions to perceived marginalization from hegemonic discourses of Christianity and capitalism. As such, this paper will discuss the values of “strength” and “superiority/ supremacy” within the subculture, the perception of Christianity as a dominating force to be rebelled against and the means of rebellion, and how the ideology is disseminated through music and other forms of outreach similar to fascist rhetoric today.


STRONGER THAN ALL Most Western youth subcultures emerge as a form of youth rebellion through music against established cultural norms, larger socio-political processes of capitalist lifestyles, and “bourgeois” moralities (Danesi 2018). The subculture of the second wave of Norwegian black metal is no exception. Though ‘Shock Rock’ was already in existence in the form of Alice Cooper’s theatrical stage antics, along with the purely performative satanic and violent imagery of English First Wave Black Metal band Venom or American Thrash Metal band Slayer, Second Wave Norwegian Black Metal bands differentiate themselves by wearing corpse-paint makeup, black leather adorned with spikes, and using occult imagery and lyricism as a means of living an ethos rather than acting on stage. This ethos is the retaliation against the “socialist and multicultural policies” of a “harmonious, postmodern, oil-rich,” and predominantly Christian state through a core ideology of individualism and “resistance against the corporate mainstream” (Wallin et al 2017:161; Spracklen 2013:419). The value in individual strength and its coalescence with occult imagery within the Norwegian black metal community is something extolled by Ihsahn, vocalist of the highly influential group Emperor: “It is the law of nature. The strong survive. That is basically the mentality behind my Satanism—the individual. Strong, intelligent, and powerful.” (Hensley 1995, quoted in Phillipov 2012:158). It is in ideas of dominance and social hierarchy such as this that black metal values and fascist values find common ground. As Griffiths states, “fascism is hostile to egalitarianism… It not only promotes Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

violence but relishes it…” (Griffiths 2017, quoted in Peters 2018:1). Violent acts are central to the “mythology” of the black metal community, either as acts of political and cultural dissidence through church burnings or displays of power through murder and assault (Phillipov 2012). The most infamous example of the latter would be the violent 1993 murder of Mayhem guitarist Euronymous at the hands of bandmate Varg Vikernes (also the founder of the one-man band, Burzum,) where Euronymous was stabbed 25 times in the upper body. During his trial, Varg had alleged he committed the murder in self-defence, though many claim that it was either the result of a financial dispute or an attempt on Varg’s part to outdo the brutal and bigoted murder of a homosexual man at the hands of Emperor drummer Faust (Philippov 2012). The poster child of violence within the Norwegian black metal scene, Varg would also be implicated in multiple church burnings, a highly politicized action within the lens of paganism and rebellion against Christianity that is integral to the community. “PAGAN” FEARS As mentioned earlier, the subculture of Second Wave Norwegian Black Metal gained notoriety and came to media prominence in the early 1990s after a string of arson attacks, wherein 15-20 historic wooden stave churches were burned down by prominent figures in the black metal community as an expression of anti-Christian sentiment (Philippov 2012:154). The motivations behind these attacks are historical, according to the perpetrators, as they believe Christianity (Evangelical Lutheranism, specifically) had erased Norway’s native pagan culture as pagan churches were razed and local subjects forced to convert under threat of death by missionaries in the 8th century (Wallin et al 2017:163-164). As a 21


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 result, antagonist images of Satan and paganism have been used to form an identity that counters the historical oppression under the Lutheran belief in a “prohibitive” God; in the words of Gaahl, iconic frontman of the band Gorgoroth: Satan represents freedom (170). More importantly, however, the call-back to Norway’s pagan history in retaliation to Christianization has also served to fuel ethnonationalist sentiment in members of Norway’s black metal community, attempting to “revive” Nordic traditions, lineages, and relations to the landscape (163). In its attempts to create a white-exclusive nation of pagans, this movement parallels Peters’ citation of “the myth of ethnic or national renewal” as one of the three tenets of fascism, lending more coalescence between some of the major cultural values of the Norwegian black metal scene and fascist ideology (2018:1). This sentiment is further supported by the view that Christianization weakened the Norse nation, integrating the reverence of strength and social hierarchy into white-exclusive “pagan” nation-making and national crisismongering in true fascist form (Kahn-Harris 2004: 99; Peters 2018:1). BLACK METAL AS POLITICAL DISSEMINATION As mentioned before, youth cultures emerge largely through music in response to larger social currents (Danesi 2018). As such, music can become a conduit for political ideologies and can be used to spread its own discourses. Examples of this can be seen in the United Kingdom’s (UK) punk scene in the 1970s, where the Socialist Workers’ Party recruited bands such as The Clash and organized the “Rock Against Racism” concerts in response to growing fascist sentiment in the UK propagated by groups like the National Front (Shaffer 2013:466).

22 As a counter-response, the National Front and its youth branch would co-opt the use of music to spread its own political ideals by hosting “Rock Against Communism,” promoting Neo-Nazi bands, challenging leftist youth movements, and calling to attention their perceived issues on race (467). Though “Rock Against Communism” was relatively unsuccessful compared to its leftist counterpart, it proved to still be effective in attracting youth sympathetic to its cause (468-469). Similarly, farright movements have attempted to co-opt the anti-Christian and anti-modern values of black metal through subgenres such as National Socialist Black Metal, attracting a smaller, yet politically involved minority of fans (Spracklen 2013:420). However, though Second Wave Black Metal bands rarely espoused fascist values directly through their music, those with more clout in the scene would take to other platforms to do so (KahnHarris 2004:105). After his release from prison in 2009, Varg Vikernes would become a Youtuber under the name “ThuleanPerspective,” creating vlogs espousing highly xenophobic views on racial differences, antisemitic rhetoric, the values of the pagan nation, and anti-capitalist arguments in favour of environmental protection, echoing once again the parallels between traditional black metal values and fascist ideology to over 246,000 subscribers (ThuleanPerspective 2017). As detailed by Peters (2018), political aesthetics in recent times are often constructed through social media such as Twitter or, in this case, Youtube, as these channels often allow far-right rhetoric (among others, to be fair) to bypass bureaucracy to reach larger populations (3). The dissemination of right-wing rhetoric by iconic figures within the black metal community thus reinforces the overlap between traditional black metal values and fascist rhetoric, sharing similar means of ideological


distribution. CONCLUSION Second Wave Norwegian Black Metal and its core subcultural values overlap very heavily with fascist ideology, allowing for a very visible farright presence within the community. These shared values include the reverence of violence and social domination, the creation of a racially exclusive ethno-state, the discourse of a national crisis in response to larger socio-cultural trends of historical Christianization, and the emergence of capitalism along with its perceived bourgeois hypocrisies to create an ideologically motivated musical youth culture. However, it would be fallacious to claim that fans of Second Wave Black Metal, which has reached fans around the world, all share similar fascistleaning views, as Spracklen (2013) has shown in his study of online black metal fan communities (418). This can also be supported by my own taste for the music as an insider of heavy metal communities, as my own political beliefs and racial background have nothing in common with the values described by those preaching pagan-nationalism in the ‘90s Norwegian black metal scene. Moreover, it would also be fallacious to claim that all members of this community of musicians subscribed to similar political views, as Euronymous himself held strong communist beliefs (though extreme ideologies in general do seem common in this subculture). While this paper has attempted to demystify the parallels between black metal and fascist ideologies, the black metal mythos remains shrouded in controversy.

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REFERENCES Danesi, Marcel. 2018. From Flappers to Rappers: The Origins, Evolution, and Demise of Youth Culture. Toronto: Canadian Scholars Press. Kahn-Harris, Keith. 2004. The ‘Failure’ of Youth Culture: Reflexivity, Music and Politics in the Black Metal Scene. European Journal of Cultural Studies 7 (1): 95-111. DOI:10.1177/1367549404039862. Peters, Michael A. 2018. The Return of Fascism: Youth, Violence and Nationalism. Educational Philosophy and Theory. DOI: 10.1080/00131857.2018.1519772. Phillipov, Michelle. 2012. Extreme Music for Extreme People? Norwegian Black Metal and Transcendent Violence. Popular Music History. 6(1): 150-163. DOI: 10.1558/pomh.v6i1/2.150. Shaffer, Ryan. 2013. The Soundtrack of NeoFascism: Youth and Music in the National Front. Patterns of Prejudice 47(4-5): 458-482. DOI: 10.1080/0031322X.2013.842289 Spracklen, Karl. 2013. Nazi Punks Folk Off: Leisure, Nationalism, Cultural Identity and the Consumption of Metal and Molk Music. Leisure Studies 32(4): 415-428. DOI: 10.1080/02614367.2012.674152 “Am I a White Supremacist?” Youtube Video. 6:14. “ThuleanPerspective”. May 7, 2017. https://www. youtube.com/watch?v=moN67R7Vew0. Wallin, Jason, Podoshen, Jeffrey, and Venkatesh, Vivek. 2017. Second Wave True Norwegian Black Metal: An Ideologically Evil Music Scene? Arts and the Market 7(2): 159-173. DOI: 10.1108/ AAM-12-2016-0025.

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THE CLIMATE CHANGE SOCIAL (MEDIA) MOVEMENT ARIEL KENNY

ABSTRACT This paper focuses on the overwhelming emotions generated by climate change awareness and the virtual practices that environmental activists can use to motivate collective action through social media despite them. Upon reviewing Jem Bendell’s controversial 2018 climate change paper Deep Adaptation as foreground on the indivisibility of emotions and climate change, this essay considers whether emotional appeals are necessary for environmentalist organizing and how they may be employed. I progress this argument by providing extensive context on the emotional barriers apparent in environmentalist organizing (namely despair, hope, and anger). Additionally, I discuss how social media can be used to overcome these barriers through various practices, such as social network influence, virilizing broad personal action frames to create collective identities, and providing validation for sharing environmentalist content online. As I frame these practices through sociological theories on social movements, alienation, and empathy rituals, I argue that social media can serve as a viable tool for environmental activists seeking to organize. Within this, I acknowledge that the platform’s effectiveness is deserving of further consideration from social network and social movement scholars. KEYWORDS: climate change, social media, social movements, environmentalists INTRODUCTION Among environmentalists and adjacently aware individuals, the end of the Anthropocene has become a growing cause for concern and distress. The topic has especially taken off in web forums and social media sites in recent decades as the effects of climate change have run rampant. Nihilist memes about the impossible future are posted in bushels, and online discussions about climate catastrophe have coined the now widely used term “Inevitable Near Term Human Extinction” (Bendell 2018). In 2018, Jem Bendell, Professor of Sustainability Leadership at the University of Cumbria, wrote a response to the environmental collapse chatter he had

seen on social media. His bluntly-written essay, Deep Adaptation: A Map for Navigating Climate Tragedy (Bendell 2018), offers a conceptual guide to dealing with the emotional impact of climate change. Rather than repress this impact, however, the paper relies on emotionality itself to sell its message through graphic yet honest depictions of climate collapse targeted towards a general audience—a tone that strays far from the norm in academic literature. Once submitted to an academic journal, Deep Adaptation’s brutal honesty was subjected to heavy revisions by editors out of concern for the strong and overwhelmingly negative emotional response it would incite in its readership (Bendell 2018; Tsjeng


2019). Reviewers commented that “the language used is not appropriate for a scholarly article” and questioned whether its realist, brash approach would be an appropriate addition to climate literature (Bendell 2018:34). Though these editors sought to curb the language used, Bendell emphasized that this approach was intentional (Bendell 2018:34-35; Tsjeng 2019). In fact, Bendell (2018:34) refused to work with the journal’s requests for revisions, calling them “either impossible or inappropriate” due to the necessity of emotion in his writing. Bendell (2018) consequently withdrew the paper from the journal’s submission process and published it freely online, where it has since gained the reputation of being “The Climate Change Paper So Depressing It’s Sending People to Therapy” (Tsjeng 2019). The voices of climate change deniers have dwindled over the past few decades, and as such, few remain on the “other side” of the issue. It is safe to say that everyone wants a healthy planet; nobody wants the climate to change. This shared agreement might seem like the perfect grounds for a global environmentalist movement to start, and yet, these efforts are sparse, and our environment continues to decay. Many of the most ardent climate change activists echo the sentiments expressed by Bendell (2018) but spreading awareness of the urgency of the issue has not been met with such open arms. Environmentalists struggle to mobilize their non-politicized peers due to the gravity of the task at hand, the sheer impossibility of prevention, and the distance individuals feel to the global issue. Climate change has since been documented as a major source of distress (a state newly coined by researchers as “climate rage” or “eco-anxiety”) that can yield suicidal and even homicidal thoughts among those who dare to care Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

(Hickman 2019; American Psychological Association 2018; Arnocky, Dupuis, and Stroink 2012). Regarding these profound reactions, it may be more accurate to reframe modern climate change “deniers” as those who are aware of its cataclysmic approach but are too shaken by its scope to do anything about it. And yet, as a global issue, the climate change movement needs every activist the Earth can spare. Depending on how soon and how well climate change is challenged, the future we inherit will be pastoral or apocalyptic (Fiskio 2012). How, then, can environmentalists broach the emotional barriers that keep their non-politicized peers from participating in calls to action? As stakeholders in the future of our environmental health, environmentalists must use every tool available to ensure their livelihood through collective action. Social media can be one of these tools, as it already thrives as a platform for shaping collective identities, critical consciousness, community organizing, and all the emotional appeals that spark political action. But can the extreme apathy and feelings of alienation stoked by climate change be so easily turned into moral outrage and motivation towards collective action? Can individuals overcome and subvert social media’s reportedly alienating effect by using it to forge communities that can challenge the incoming climate catastrophe? DEEP ADAPTATION: COPING WITH CLIMATE CHANGE In Deep Adaptation’s evaluation of environmental resilience and action, Bendell (2018) recognizes the despair and tragedies that climate change will bring. His observations on this effect are neither novel nor controversial; such reactions have been documented 25


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 by studies conducted by the American Psychological Association (2018; Clayton et al. 2017) as well as in psychotherapists’ reports of rising cases of clients exhibiting “climate rage” (Hickman 2019). Bendell’s (2018) paper addresses readers who are experiencing these distressed states and elicits emotional responses in those who are new to the issue by introducing the tragic implications of future food insecurity and frequent natural disasters. That is to say, Bendell’s paper is not presented in emotional tones for a dramatic, “end-is-nigh” effect, but rather is speaking to an established, affected audience and is further rousing those emotions in other readers for the sake of raising their own acute awareness. Of course, this still posed the question as to why the paper would be written to intentionally stir up such a negative reaction in the reader that cannot be controlled for. Deep Adaptation was criticized for potentially prompting climate change denial outright amongst its readers, as well as “helplessness, inadequacy, and hopelessness and ultimately disengagement from the issue” (Bendell 2018). It plainly delivers bad news that is not—and cannot be—sugar-coated as one might expect. Critics argued that this overwhelming image of climate change would no doubt render a deer-in-headlights effect on the average person for whom the paper was written, in its candour and layman terms (Tsjeng 2019). Bendell (2018:1826) argues, however, that this emotionality is not only intentional in his research but necessary in approaching the issue of climate change: “Emotional difficulties with realising the tragedy that is coming, and that is in many ways upon us already, are understandable. Yet these difficulties need to be overcome so we can explore what the implications may

26 be for our work, lives and communities [...] Whatever we choose to work on in the future will not be a simple calculation. It will be shaped by the emotional or psychological implications of this new awareness of a societal collapse being likely in our own lifetimes.” Bendell (2018) additionally argues that his paper has been “transformative” for some readers who go on to seek therapy or join activist groups to cope with their reactions to impending climate collapse. In recognizing and accepting that the future will be—to put it mildly—different, Bendell (2018) stresses the need for his titular “deep adaptation,” a term he coins to refer to 1) resilience in the face of climate change, and 2) relinquishment of certain assets, behaviours, and beliefs that will not be sustainable in the coming environment. This practice of deep adaptation is the key focus of this paper as it offers a guide on how to approach the changing future with these coping mechanisms. The takeaway from this—as Bendell (2018) argues throughout his paper—is that emotions cannot be separated from the effects of climate change. Knowledge of its approach alone sparks deep and jarring reactions of anxiety and hopelessness, and we can predict from current studies on PTSD from natural disaster survivors that living in the new climate will also affect our emotional lives in worldshattering and unprecedented ways (Clayton et al. 2017). Keeping this in mind, it is difficult to fathom how, exactly, environmental activism can be incited at all given the weight of despair that its realization brings.


RADICAL HOPE IN THE EMOTIONAL CONSTELLATION To approach this issue, we need to explore how exactly hopelessness stalls collective action. Benski and Langman (2013) review such an effect in their article on the role of emotions in spurring several similarly grand social movements in 2013. In their article, Benski and Langman (2013) argue that system crises prompted by large-scale corporate institutions (such as climate change) threaten individuals’ self-identity and self-esteem to produce extreme distress as its effects shape their livelihood by limiting the means through which they can live. This distress is not manifested through a singular feeling, however, but through an ‘emotional constellation’, which Benski and Langman (2013) define as a combination of emotions towards an issue that shape how individuals act. As Benski and Langman (2013) explain, emotional constellations can be congruent (in that they prompt a similar action or response) or incongruent (in that they are so conflicting that they stall one’s actions by suggesting diverging reactions). Congruent emotions such as happiness and determination towards a goal mutually encourage directed behaviour to accomplish the goal, whereas incongruent emotions towards an issue such as anger and fear leave individuals torn between confronting the issue and retreating from it—and, consequently, they do neither. Resultantly, the feeling of anger towards corporations polluting the environment, of despair towards one’s future livelihood, and the ability to change it produces an incongruent emotional constellation that leads individuals to stall in joining collective action. This is perpetuated as the anger that would otherwise motivate them is impeded by the apathetic considerations produced by despair (Benski and Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

Langman 2013). In applying this to Bendell’s (2018) framing of deep adaptation, we can see how the emotional constellation towards climate change can be overwhelming and incongruent. Bendell (2018:24) even addresses how climate change researchers and other hardened environmentalists like himself are not immune to these incongruent and conflicting realizations that pit despair against hope. But Bendell’s (2018) approach to deep adaptation largely seeks to comfort the population in the throes of environmental catastrophe rather than suggest ways to wholly prevent it. This focus is defended as Bendell (2018) presents strong arguments on the impossibility of various preservation efforts, which are daunting to say the least. However, in spite of this, Bendell still suggests the adoption of “radical hope” for a future that, while “different,” can be livable once its limitations are accepted. This ‘radical hope’ is the keystone of the environmentalist’s emotional constellation. When hope replaces despair to then meet with anger in emotional constellations, Benski and Langman (2013) argue that it can motivate social movement participation, as well as provide a sense of community that additionally reaffirms individuals’ worth and dignity. But adopting any such hope for a movement first requires individuals to emotionally liberate themselves from the institutions that defend their polluting practices as necessary and immovable (Benski and Langman 2013). This alone is a tall order, but adopting radical hope, as Bendell (2018) describes, is even more demanding and necessary for truly effective organizing. Radical hope calls for an emotional liberation not 27


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 only from the status quo that says “this is how the world works,” but also from the ideal that the world will continue to work as it has thus far. That is to say, radical hope requires environmental activists to recognize that the world’s climate will change for the worse no matter what actions they take, but through their inaction, these outcomes will be far worse. As such, radical hope asks its believers to be realists first and optimists second; they cannot prevent catastrophe, but they can mitigate and plan for it. However, accepting that life will be objectively worse but possibly salvageable is a difficult potential to grasp, if individuals cannot fathom how to 1) ensure a better future now or 2) secure one amidst the height of catastrophe. Either way seems impossible under the circumstances as theorists such as Bendell (2018:13) paint apocalyptic pictures of resource wars, famine, and structural collapse: “But when I say starvation, destruction, migration, disease and war, I mean in your own life. With the power down, soon you wouldn’t have water coming out of your tap. You will depend on your neighbours for food and some warmth. You will become malnourished. You won’t know whether to stay or go. You will fear being violently killed before starving to death.” So even after burgeoning environmentalists are awakened to the reality of their situation and are freed from their emotional investments in defending the institutions that will not protect them from climate collapse—what do they have then? Who do they have to turn to when the system fails? Benski and Langman (2013) answer that upon emotionally liberating oneself from the status quo (or “relinquishing” in Bendell’s terms,) activists

28 must construct new emotional bonds with other activists. Communities must be built, support must be established, and solidarity must be grounded in shared emotional experiences. Benski and Langman (2013) argue that it is only by this route that individuals and social movements can become active agents of change. But how can these new bonds be formed and sustained? What are the obstacles to forming them, and how can they be overcome through modern technologies? OVERCOMING ALIENATION IN THE FACE OF CLIMATE CHANGE As such a large-scale problem, it is difficult to conceive of a solution to climate change when the individual impact on the issue seems futile. Indeed, it is not the individual actions of people failing to recycle coffee cups or buy reusable bags, but rather the many mining, agricultural, manufacturing and related industries that are polluting the environment and the governmental policies that permit these practices. Though systemic crises have been challenged before through social movements, it is difficult to form a movement around an issue that feels so indirect; climate change is not so tangible, and neither is an individual’s role in it. It is this feeling of alienation that presents the gap between individuals’ reception to climate change activism and their formation of social movements. According to Marxist theory, as reviewed by Burkitt (2019), alienation is a result of capitalist social relations whereby workers or individuals are so removed from the products of their actions that they do not recognize their role in it, therefore rendering the product ‘alien.’ Thus, even as employees for polluting industries or as voting citizens, individuals cannot perceive their effect on permitting or


contributing to the major players of climate change. Beyond this, alienation also exists between individuals as communities grow further separated by distinctions of class and social roles under capitalist society (Burkitt 2019). In its relation to this topic, environmentalists face alienation from their non-politicized peers including the things they produce, both in terms of government institutions and corporations’ effects on climate change. These conditions have produced an alienated world, wherein environmentalists’ actions are perceived as insignificant and meaningless, thereby making a world they do not feel to be their own (Burkitt 2019; American Psychological Association 2018; Arnocky, Dupuis, and Stroink 2012). As this alienation solicits hopelessness, the average person is apt to surrender their political agency, since they believe they cannot change these policies. However, Turner (2014) argues that such alienation from institutions can be overcome when individuals relate to each other in such a way that their shared concerns bring them together and incite shared anger that can motivate collective action. These shared emotions can even potentially transcend the barriers of class to bring citizens together for a common cause. Such a social movement can allow individuals to collectively overcome their alienation from major institutions by making demands of them, however, this is still contingent upon these groups’ ability to find solidarity through a shared, motivating emotion or experience—one preferably unfettered by an incongruent emotional constellation. In this, we recognize how the emotional barrier of despair and conditions of alienation forge incongruent emotional constellations that prevent Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

individuals from recognizing their ability to join social movements that can enact change. In finding others with shared concerns, individuals can take hold of a radical hope through collectively organizing and recognizing the social and community supports that exist now and can continue to exist in the ravaged future. Even so, overcoming this alienation and forming communities of the scale that climate action likely requires calls for a platform of extreme magnitude. With its increasing relevance, social media can serve as the worldwide soapbox upon which environmentalists can call for action, just as activists for other causes have done before them. SOCIAL MEDIA PRACTICES FOR ACTIVISM Social media is being increasingly relied upon as a tool for activists of all causes to raise awareness and organize offline collective action (Gray-Hawkins 2018; Pang and Goh 2016; Velasquez and LaRose 2015; Konieczny 2014; Ortiz and Ostertag 2014; Harlow 2011). Beyond organizing, however, social media is a common medium for individuals to seek comfort when distressed, and seek solidarity with new communities (Brownlie and Shaw 2019; Ask and Abidin 2018). This is all to say that social media is an established platform for forming emotional connections and communities both personal and political, if not both. Social media sites allow activists to create politicized online communities out of non-politicized individuals around the world, such as on a Facebook page for Iranian women to share selfies sans hijab (Khazraee and Novak 2018), or a hashtag for Mexican university students to protest police brutality (Treré 2015). On this basis, there are many virtual practices which environmental activists can employ to overcome alienation and despair. The following literature demonstrates such practices used by activists of other causes as precedents for 29


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 environmentalists’ success through the medium. Social Network Influence The interpersonal networks formed through social media alone are highly influential in instilling individuals’ involvement in social movements. A study on the personal networks of online activists conducted by Nekmat et al. (2015) shows individuals’ willingness to express support online through social media (such as by “liking,” commenting, and linking posts) and offline activities (such as attending protests and wearing campaign materials) can be predicted by their closeness to activists within their social network. That is to say, close personal networks on social media can mobilize new participants into joining collective action both online and off, even above and beyond their initial predispositions to participate in activism (Nekmat et al. 2015). It is important to note that “close” in this case does not necessarily mean social connections originally made in person (though these connections do tend to be closer.) Close personal networks can be formed through entirely virtual interactions between activists and their followers who may be countries apart. Given this finding, we can see how environmentalists and other internet users can use social media to inspire others, particularly their peers, into collective action by maintaining close personal connections online. This can assist in overcoming the alienation between individuals that presents a barrier to joining social movements. Collective Identities and Personal Action Frames The strength of the call to action issued by activists on social media can be particularly affected by their employment of collective identities, or labels

30 for group membership and associated action based on shared experiences (Bennett 2012; Morozov 2011). These collective identities can be negotiated through individuals’ participation in virtual, public group discussions as they contribute their shared experiences through empathy rituals (Brownlie and Shaw 2019) to establish solidarity (Alberici and Milesi 2016; Milan 2015; Ortiz and Ostertag 2014). As they are labelled, these collective identities can then facilitate collective action by utilizing personal action frames, or calls to action. However, many viral personal action frames are so broad in their qualifying characteristics that they subsume many identities without a direct cause or underlying factor for solidarity. In other words, when collective identities are too inclusive, their personal action frames can be less applicable to all those who identify within it (Pang and Goh 2016; Milan 2015; Bennett 2012; Morozov 2011). The Occupy Wall Street movement is a notorious example of this effect as it sought to form a collective identity out of nearly everyone in the country with its personal action frame “We are the 99%” (Bennett 2012; Morozov 2011). This vague call to action against corporate greed failed spectacularly given that being part of the 99% failed to address the capabilities of any identities with it. Environmentalists who seek to do Occupy one better by attempting to radicalize all stakeholders in climate change (perhaps through “the 100%”), might face the same fate. Learning from this, environmentalists might fare better by taking a divide-and-conquer approach to collective identity formation that utilizes personal action frames that are specific and directed towards particular identities—blue-collar workers for major


polluters, students and academics in particular fields, voting-age citizens in cities where factories are posed to be built, and so on. By identifying multiple and select groups of people to campaign and form collective identities with, cells of environmentalist groups might have a better chance of unifying individuals towards collective action. Validation In a study on the role of social media for student activists, Velasquez and LaRose (2015) find that users’ investment in political social media can hinge on their perception of its success. This perception of success can come in many forms but is most often correlated to receiving positive feedback such as a “like” or “share” on a political post. For users, this success can make the difference between continuing to engage or not in the group’s social media activities. (Velasquez and LaRose 2015). This finding demonstrates that the use of social media for political purposes demands the perception of one’s capability to effectively use it. In other words, it calls for hope that the actions one engages in are actually effective. Velasquez and LaRose (2015) refer to this phenomenon—that individuals believe that the political actions they undertake will influence their political environment—as internal political efficacy. The more individuals perceived that their online experiences using social media to participate in politics have been satisfactory, the more they perceived that they had the capabilities to use these media for political purposes. In other words, the more “likes” a post got, the more likely they were to continue supporting a cause. This demonstrates that the actual effect of one’s support is not the deciding element in participating in collective action but rather the perception of the effect. In this sense, validation, Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

like the finding on social network influence, signals the importance of maintaining social connections and support between activists online in ensuring that these posts and their posters are recognized. And while this may lead to criticisms on “slacktivism,” the seemingly minimal contribution to the cause by way of sharing and liking posts still serves a crucial function to the climate change movement, if not the most important one: the signalling of hope, support, and solidarity. Given that the average social media user is already alienated from the effects of climate change and cannot fairly perceive what actions or inactions are currently shaping the environment, peer validation on social media is among the few things that can indicate that they are doing good work. Without this positive reinforcement and a perception that the majority of people are in support of a greener future, supporters are prone to further succumbing to alienation from the issue of environmentalism. They may feel they are alone and believe others are apathetic to the cause, further encouraging their despair. If environmentalists wish to encourage further participation in their movement, they need every ounce of hope they can get. Whatever hope can be stirred from liking and sharing posts can help to this end. Even if this is where one’s involvement ends, spreading awareness and signalling solidarity can promote further action. After all, the emotions and critical consciousness propagated through social media can, at best, result in collective action, or at least inspire latent social anger that inches cohorts closer towards challenging the institutions responsible for climate change. 31


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 CONCLUSION Over the next several decades, social media usage will only be more interwoven into daily communication, social network formation, and news dissemination. It is therefore paramount for sociologists to recognize the pivotal role that it will continue to play as the battleground for political discourse and emotional appeals that lead to collective action. Through social network ties, specific action frames, and positive feedback on political engagement online, I believe environmentalists can use social media to their advantage. I hope that in discussing this topic, we can take this medium seriously, and further investigate its potential in addressing pressing and urgent social issues. Concerning Bendell (2018), I appreciate his attention to climate change’s emotional impact in the present, and I believe emotional rhetoric should continue to be employed to incite action via social media campaigns. This is a delicate rhetorical challenge, however, in that environmental activists must be wary of how they use emotional appeals in a way that incites radical hope rather than “sends people to therapy,” as per the reputation of Bendell’s (2018) paper. Still, as Bendell (2018:21) writes: “But we definitely know that continuing to work in the ways we have done until now is not just backfiring—it is holding the gun to our own heads. With this in mind, we can choose to explore how to evolve what we do.” And I, personally, believe this evolution can come with the opportunities for community building that social media presents.

32 REFERENCES Alberici, Augusta Isabella and Patrizia Milesi. 2016. “Online discussion, politicized identity, and collective action.” Group Processes & Intergroup Relations 19(1):43-59. American Psychological Association. 2018. Stress in America™: Generation Z. Stress in America™ Survey. Arnocky, Steven, Darcy Dupuis, and Mirella L. Stroink. 2012. “Environmental concern and fertility intentions among Canadian university students.” Population and Environment 34(2):279-292. Ask, Kristine and Crystal Abidin. 2018. “My life is a mess: self-deprecating relatability and collective identities in the memification of student issues.” Information, Communication & Society 21(6):834-850. Bendell, Jem. 2018. “Deep Adaptation: A Map for Navigating Climate Tragedy.” Occasional Paper, Institute of Leadership and Sustainability, University of Cumbria. Bennett, W. Lance. 2012. “The Personalization of Politics: Political Identity, Social Media, and Changing Patterns of Participation.” The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 644:20-39. Benski, Tova and Lauren Langman. 2013. “The effects of affects: The place of emotions in the mobilizations of 2011.” Current Sociology 61(4):525–540. Brownlie, Julie and Frances Shaw. 2019. “Empathy Rituals: Small Conversations About Emotional Distress on Twitter.” Sociology 53(1):104-22. Burkitt, Ian. 2019. “Alienation and Emotion: Social Relations and Estrangement in Contemporary Capitalism.” Emotions and Society 1(1):51-66. Clayton, S., C.M. Manning, K. Krygsman, and M. Speiser. 2017. Mental Health and Our Changing Climate: Impacts, Implications, and Guidance. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association, and ecoAmerica. Fiskio, Janet. 2012. “Apocalypse and Ecotopia: Narratives in Global Climate Change Discourse.” Race, Gender & Class 19(1-2):12-36. Gray-Hawkins, Malcolm. 2018. “Collective Movements, Digital Activism, and Protest


Events: The Effectiveness of Social Media Concerning the Organization of Large-Scale Political Participation.” Geopolitics, History, and International Relations 10(2):64–69. Harlow, Summer. 2011. “Social media and social movements: Facebook and an online Guatemalan justice movement that moved offline.” New Media & Society 14(2):225–243. Hickman, Caroline. 2019. “What psychotherapy can do for the climate and biodiversity crises.” The Conversation. Khazraee, Emad and Alison N. Novak. 2018. “Digitally Mediated Protest: Social Media Affordances for Collective Identity Construction.” Social Media + Society 1-14. Konieczny, Piotr. 2014. “Signs of a Generational change in Social Movements—Activists’ Use of Modern Information and Communication Technologies.” Polish Sociological Review 187:261-290. Milan, Stefania. 2015. “From social movements to cloud protesting: the evolution of collective Identity.” Information, Communication & Society 18(8):887-900. Morozov, Evgeny. 2011. Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom. New York, NY: Public Affairs. Nekmat, Elmie, Karla K. Gowerb, William J. Gonzenbach, and Andrew J. Flanagin. 2015. “Source effects in the micro-mobilization of collective action via social media.” Information, Communication & Society 18(9):1076–1091. Ortiz, David G. and Stephen F. Ostertag. 2014. “Katrina Bloggers and the Development of Collective Civic Action: The Web as a Virtual Mobilizing Structure.” Sociological Perspectives 57(1):52-78. Pang, Natalie, and Debbie P. C. Goh. 2016. “Are we all here for the Same Purpose? Social Media and Individualized Collective Action.” Online Information Review 40(4):544-559 Treré, Emiliano. 2015. “Reclaiming, proclaiming, and maintaining collective identity in the #YoSoy132 movement in Mexico: an examination of digital frontstage and backstage activism through social media and instant messaging platforms.” Information, Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

Communication & Society 18(8):901-915. Tsjeng, Zing. 2019. “The Climate Change Paper So Depressing It’s Sending People to Therapy.” Vice, February 27. (https://www.vice.com/en_ca/ article/vbwpdb/the-climate-change-paper-sodepressing-its-sending-people-to-therapy). Turner, Jonathan H. 2014. “Emotional Inequality and Collective Mobilization.” Pp. 137–55 in Revolt from the Middle: Emotional Stratification and Change in Post-Industrial Societies. Piscataway, NJ: Transaction Publishers. Velasquez, Alcides and Robert LaRose. 2015. “Social Media for Social Change: Social Media Political Efficacy and Activism in Student Activist Groups.” Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media 59(3):456–474.

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RACE, CLASS, AND GENDER: THE #METOO MOVEMENT & STIGMA VICTORIA BARCLAY ABSTRACT When framed as an inequality issue, sexual violence is often perceived solely as a problem of gender inequality. However, racial and class identities also play a major role in such experiences. This study examines the #MeToo movement to investigate how race, class, and gender affect the existence and experience of the stigma associated with the victimization of sexual violence. Using the intersectionality perspective originally coined by Kimberlé Crenshaw in 1989, this study illustrates how the privilege of upper-class white women in Hollywood contributes to the erasure of lower-class, racialized women within the #MeToo movement despite the movement’s initial objective, as asserted by founder Tarana Burke, to destigmatize the sexual violence survivor realities of racialized women. Beyond accentuating the hegemonic upper-class whiteness that is prevalent in society, the analysis presented in this paper acts as reasoning for why interlocked identities need to be considered and accommodated in the creation and revision of social programs and policies surrounding gender-based violence. KEYWORDS: #MeToo, intersectionality, stigma, sexual violence INTRODUCTION Sexual violence is a global inequality issue that differs in severity, consequences, prioritization, and more, across the globe. Sexual violence is a complex issue of power dynamics that has distinct effects on people who are oppressed based on occupying marginalized identities (Lykke 2015). In this paper, I will show how the #MeToo movement in the Western world has contributed to the destigmatization of gender-based violence for primarily middle- and upper-class white women, despite its original goal of focusing on the experiences of racialized women. Sociologically, there is currently no systematic method for understanding destigmatization methods (Lamont 2018). Based on Mendes, Ringrose,

and Keller (2018), this paper will measure destigmatization as increasing the visibility of sexual violence. To begin, I shall conceptualize gender and racial inequality and outline the intersectionality theory. Next, a brief description of the #MeToo movement will be provided. A literature review will evaluate the current gender-based violence and the #MeToo movement scholarship. Subsequently, I will explain the intersectionality necessity for genderbased violence analyses. My first major argument is that the #MeToo movement has generally decreased

stigmatization primarily for middle- and upper-class white women as opposed to racialized women, which I will illustrate by statistical evidence. The second major argument is that upper-class white female


Hollywood actors have appropriated the #MeToo movement, contributing to the central focus on the upper-class white women narrative, and more importantly, ignoring the experiences of lower-class and/or racialized women. Through emphasizing longstanding systemic racism and structural barriers, I will respond to a counterargument of the thesis that an intersectional perspective is not necessary for studying gender-based violence. Lastly, I will discuss the future impacts and legacies of the #MeToo movement, particularly the structural barriers it can create and influence. INEQUALITY: RACE, CLASS, AND GENDER Kimberlé Crenshaw coined the term intersectionality in the 1980s to describe the notion that individuals possess interconnected identities that produce interlocking systems of oppression (CBC News 2017; Collins 1991). Although most modern uses of the intersectionality perspective encompass multiple identities (e.g., race, age, class, sexual orientation), the original focus was on race, class, and gender (Satzewich & Liodakis 2017). According to this theory, sexual harassment can be considered an issue that involves complex power dynamics that vary in regard to identities like race, class, and sexual orientation (Lykke 2015). Further, these power dynamics are influenced by differing cultures and/or stereotypes relating to those cultures (Lykke 2015). For example, based on this theory, one can assume that the sexual violence experiences of an upperclass, cisgender white woman would differ from that of a lower-class, transgender black man. Although modern forms of intersectionality focus on a broad range of identities, this paper will only focus on the identities first outlined by Crenshaw (race, class, and gender) due to the lack of information currently available and obtainable by this project. Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

WHAT IS #METOO? Tarana Burke founded the #MeToo movement in 2006 intending to illuminate the frequency of sexual violence while simultaneously destigmatizing the experience of it, particularly for black women and other women of colour (“History & Vision” n.d.). More recently, the #MeToo movement is inclusive of other identities too, such as queer women, widening the original focus on racialized women (“History & Vision” n.d.). The #MeToo movement is a recognized organization but the hashtag is intended to be used by any victim of sexual violence (“History & Vision” n.d.). Over a decade after Burke’s 2006 creation, #MeToo resurfaced on Twitter when actor Alyssa Milano encouraged women who had experiences with sexual violence to write a social media post using the “#MeToo” tag (Prasad, 2018). While Milano specifically requested this action from women-identifying individuals who had endured sexual violence, several men-identifying victims also wrote a post with the hashtag (Prasad 2018). The #MeToo movement’s website, metoomvmt.org, states that the primary goal of the movement is to initiate dialogues about sexual harassment to decrease the stigma associated with being a survivor but adds that future desired implications can include legal and systemic changes that force the perpetrators’ accountability (“History & Vision” n.d.). CURRENT SCHOLARSHIP The current scholarship studying the #MeToo movement is limited in quantity, which is expected from such a modern topic. The majority of scholarship exploring the #MeToo movement focuses on how the movement has structurally affected sexual violence victims in society. Structural barriers include those that exist in the public health sector, as the #MeToo movement emphasizes that healthcare 35


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 systems must be equipped to deal with the negative impacts sexual violence has on victims’ everyday lives (O’Neil et. Al. 2018). Structural concerns are also inclusive of the education system, as the #MeToo movement was used as a tool by university students to publicly reveal the acts of sexual misconduct executed by professors against graduate and undergraduate students (Rentschler 2018). Another important structural concern addressed by current scholarship through the examination of the #MeToo movement is the legal framework and processes regarding sexual misconduct investigations (Hudson 2018). Hudson (2018) urges that employers must continue to adhere to the current legal standards when handling sexual violence cases in the workplace. Media and public opinion can often exert strong pressures that may affect the perception of certain individuals, but such circumstances have the power to wrongly influence legal matters that can lead to faulty outcomes (Hudson 2018). Other scholarships analyzing the #MeToo movement look at the cultural aspect of the movement and how that affects society’s impression of sexual violence and judgement of sexual violence victims. Xiong, Cho, and Boatwright (2018) analyzed the impact of the #MeToo movement on the constructions of discourses related to feminism and argued that #MeToo is a social media tactic for demonstrating the pervasiveness of sexual violence in society. McCann (2018) emphasizes the necessity of an intersectional approach to the research of the #MeToo movement to increase the understanding of non-heteronormative sexual violence, especially because heteronormative sexual violence has been the main societal understanding of the issue.

36 RELEVANCY OF INTERSECTIONAL INEQUALITY The employment of intersectionality with respect to social inequality research is still widely underused. Thus, the current scholarship does not reflect a full understanding of the realities encountered by people who experience multiple oppressions simultaneously. The #MeToo movement became globally popular because of the efforts of famous white women with class privilege in Hollywood, but it is being adopted by women who are not famous because they may not have access to the financial or media resources necessary to take other action (Sigurdsson 2018; Prasad 2018). Jones (2018) notes that explicitly denouncing racism is often seen as overly confrontational but adds that #MeToo should take a stronger stance against racism. Lower-class, black, and/or women of colour sexual violence survivors are explicitly singled out on the #MeToo movement website as identities that the movement aims to help, but women outside of these categories are also using the hashtag (Jones 2018). Thus, the relationship between race, class, and #MeToo may be weaker than Burke had intended because it leaves much room for the entrance of other identities. The World Health Organization (WHO; 2017, Key Facts section) reported that approximately 38% of murdered women in 2017 were killed by intimate partners. In addition, 1 in 5 women in the United States of America (USA) is raped in their lifetime, in comparison to 1 in 71 men according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV; n.d., Rape section). WHO (2017, Key Facts section) also noted that 35% of women have experienced physical and/or sexual violence within their lifetime. Sexual violence can cause physical and/or sexual complications for victims, while also having


emotional and/or mental health implications (World Health Organization 2017, Health consequences section). Thus, intersectional gender-based violence research is important for improving the services and programs available to sexual violence survivors, and for gaining a deeper understanding of the survivor demographic. Intersectional gender-based violence research will also be useful for reexamining and reproducing policies and programs that specifically accommodate the unique realities created by interlocked identities. REPORTS OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE INCREASED WITH #METOO The reports of sexual violence during the peak of #MeToo and immediately afterwards increased in both Canada and the USA (The Canadian Press 2018; Milligan 2018). October 2017 was the month where #MeToo went viral and this was the same time that Canadian national sexual violence reports increased from 59 per day to 74 per day (Rotenberg and Cotter 2018, para. 8). Women were victims of sexual violence in nine of ten reports, and three of four of the reported sexual violence incidents had occurred within the previous month (The Canadian Press 2018, para. 17; para. 15). In the USA, sexual violence reports to police increased from 23% in 2016 to 40% in 2017 (Milligan 2018, para. 2). It is critical to recognize that the reports do not signify an increase in the occurrence of sexual violence, but rather an increase in the number of sexual violence incidents that were officially reported. Mendes et. al. (2018) articulates that the action of posting “#MeToo” contributes to the destigmatization of sexual violence because it makes it visible. As Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

a consequence of destigmatization, the reports of sexual assault should increase because people will feel less fearful and shameful regarding their experiences (Mendes et. al. 2018). Thus, per Mendes et. al. (2018), these statistics indicate there has been at least some degree of destigmatization regarding sexual violence. However, these statistics do not outline the race or class of the victims who have reported sexual violence. INTERSECTIONALLY SPEAKING There is substantive research outlining the greater vulnerability lower-class racialized women possess compared to their upper-class white women counterparts concerning sexual violence. African American women are stereotyped to be promiscuous, which contributes to the belief that they are blameworthy for their own victimization (Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault n.d.). Furthermore, a Maryland study showed that African American women were less likely to access services as a result of sexual violence experiences and that when they did access them, they were still less satisfied with the service than white women (Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault n.d.). Constante (2018, para. 19) finds that 26.9% of Hispanic women face sexual violence within the course of their life, compared to 35.5% of nonHispanic black women, and 22.9% of women identifying as Asian Pacific Islanders. These statistics highlight the racial differences of susceptibility to be a victim of sexual assault, within the category “women of colour.” There is a lack of statistics to expose the racial and class differentiations of the upsurge of sexual violence reports during and after #MeToo went viral. Under the assumption that reports remained constant regardless of race and 37


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 class, upper-class white women would remain to have a greater number of reports, as this would align with previous statistics and conceptions. It is important to consider the reasons why governments do not track the race and class of sexual violence victims. Statistics Canada gathers the age and the type of geographical area of residence (urban vs rural) of people who experience sexual violence. However, the Statistics Canada report on sexual violence as a result of #MeToo does not mention class or race. It can be argued that the intersectional lens is relatively modern, but the current lack of intersectional demographics by the government suggests that the intersection of race, class, and gender may not be viewed as significant data in need of tracking. The lack of data further reinforces the idea that lower-class racialized women are marginalized and even ignored in society, and that their unique realities as a result of their interlocked identities are underrecognized by social and political institutions. HOLLYWOOD REINFORCES THE SOCIAL HIERARCHY Despite Tarana Burke, a black woman, founding the #MeToo movement in 2006, #MeToo went viral in Hollywood, and consequently globally, over 10 years later through the actions of upper-class white women (“History & Vision” n.d.; Prasad 2018). Some activists have expressed that sexual violence and the #MeToo movement only gained such prominence in society because of the way it was framed to effect white women specifically (Constante 2018). Women of colour, women of lower-class, and women who do not possess as much privilege as the people who popularized the movement have always seen gender-based violence as a societal issue (Constante

38 2018). Hollywood’s role in popularizing the #MeToo movement has placed rich white women at the center of sexual violence issues which contributes to the societal ignorance towards lower-class women of colour and sexual violence they experience specifically because of their identities (CBC Radio 2018). The current circumstances are exemplary of how white women adapted an existing movement and have used it to their advantage, while further erasing the importance of racialized bodies and the people who first started it. Since the intersection of identities is so significant to people’s experiences, the wide use of #MeToo via social media by upper-class white women only makes visible the experiences of people who are like them, other upper-class white women. The lack of existing statistics makes the races and classes of the non-famous individuals who have posted the hashtag unclear. However, based on the knowledge that the movement gained popularity from upper-class white women, it can be inferred that middle- and upper-class white women participated in the movement more greatly than women who do not possess such identities. Due to white women’s appropriation of #MeToo, the destigmatization and visibility of lower class and/or non-white experiences of sexual violence were largely ignored. COLOUR BLINDNESS AND PULLING THE RACE CARD Colour blindness refers to the idea that racial identity is insignificant to one’s life trajectories and experiences and is commonly used to argue that racial inequality is either not, or never was, existent in society (Burke 2017). An opposing view to the argument of this paper is that lower class and/or racialized women are not less visible within the


#MeToo movement because such identities do not produce widespread differences within experiences of sexual violence. Often when women communicate differences in their experiences and claim those differences are rooted in differing identities such as race, they are told they are, “pulling the race card” (CBC Radio 2018). However, systemic racism is an issue in many areas of society, and the statistics outlined in previous sections of this paper indicate that lower-class women of colour are much more vulnerable to the effects of gender-based violence (Stone 2018). Thus, the act of disregarding one’s race and/or class is an act of disregarding the systemic barriers that people face every day because of those uniquely interlocking identities. Further, the existence of colour blindness requires that racial oppression be non-existent. Since systemic racism already exists, ignoring race does not eliminate racism. Instead, further oppression of racial minorities takes place because the experiences and claims that are race-specific are either erased or invalidated. #METOO AND THE FUTURE OF SEXUAL VIOLENCE The initial objective of the #MeToo movement was to highlight the frequency of sexual violence within society and this paper outlines how the movement has visibilized and consequently destigmatized sexual violence for middle- and upper-class white women. In the future, this movement can, and likely will, take a more inclusive approach, thereby broadening the experiences it makes visible, and consequently destigmatizes. #MeToo has the potential to destigmatize racialized experiences, classist experiences, homophobic experiences, and other intersections of sexual violence. Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

The next steps must include methods for ending sexual violence, coping with the aftermath of sexual violence experiences, developing programs and policies that help people who have experienced sexual violence and people who have experienced sexual violence as a consequence of, or simultaneously occupying, other marginalized identities. Therefore, the #MeToo movement impacts the intersectional inequality of sexual violence by visibilizing the issue and serving as a stepping stone for improving societal structures that deal with the post-sexual violence victimization experiences. CONCLUSION This paper has demonstrated how the #MeToo movement in the Western world has contributed to the destigmatization of being a gender-based victim for middle- and upper-class white women, even though its initial objective was to uplift stigma specifically for women of colour. Notably, this paper showed that intersectionality is important for grasping a fuller understanding of sexual violence and its implications. Additionally, the white privilege that operates within the destigmatization of sexual violence victimization was exposed. Further research on sexual violence that accentuates how race, class, gender, and other identity dimensions create unique experiences for victims is critical for designing preventative policies and creating healing resources for survivors. Additionally, future research should consider the implications of having an avenue to destigmatize experiences associated with specific identities, so that narratives of neglected sexual violence survivors can become apparent. The (de)stigmatization of trans/non-binary sex workers of colour, and sex workers of colour compared to white cisgender sex workers is another 39


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 topic to be scrutinized by researchers to determine if white privilege exists similar to its presence within the #MeToo movement. REFERENCES Burke, Meghan A. 2017. “Colorblind Racism: Identities, Ideologies, and Shifting Subjectivities.” Sociological Perspectives 60(5):857-865. CBC News. 2017. “For women in Canadian politics, there is no universal experience.” CBC News, January 10. Retrieved March 20, 2019 (https://www.cbc.ca/news/opinion/women-inpolitics-1.3927601) CBC Radio. 2018. “#MeToo (but not you): Black women are being left out of the conversation on violence, says El Jones.” CBC radio, February 21. Retrieved March 19, 2019 (https://www.cbc.ca/radio/thecurrent/thecurrent-for-february-21-2018-1.4543540/ metoo-but-not-you-black-women-are-being-leftout-of-the-conversation-on-violence-says-eljones-1.4543704) Collins, Patricia H. 1991. Black Feminist Thought: Knowledge, Consciousness, and the Politics of Empowerment. New York: NY: Routledge. Constante, Agnes. 2018. “Hollywood is having a #MeToo moment. Women of color have fought this battle for decades.” NBC news, January 28. Retrieved March 20, 2019 (https://www. nbcnews.com/news/us-news/hollywood-havingmetoo-moment-women-color-have-fought-battledecades-n841121) “History & Vision.” N.d. Retrieved March 21, 2020 (https://metoomvmt.org/about/#history) Hudson, Deborah. 2018. “Workplace Harassment After #MeToo.” Queen’s University IRC 1-17. Jones, Camara P. 2018. “#MeToo Against Racism.” Journal of Human Lactation 34(2):232. Lamont, Michèle. 2018. “Addressing Recognition Gaps: Destigmatization and the Reduction of Inequality.” American Sociological Review 83(3):419–444. Lykke, Lucia C. 2015. “Visibility and denial: accounts of sexual violence in race- and genderspecific magazines.” Feminist Media Studies

40 16(2):239-260. Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault. N.d. “African-American Women and Sexual Assault”, (n.d.). Retrieved March 21, 2019 (https://mcasa. org/assets/files/African-American-Women-andSexual-Assault1.pdf) McCann, Hannah. 2018. “Big Reputations: Who Has the Power to Speak #MeToo?” Australian Humanities Review 63:185-189. Mendes, Kaitlynn, Jessica Ringrose, and Jessalynn Keller. 2018. “#MeToo and the promise and pitfalls of challenging rape culture through digital feminist activism.” European Journal of Women’s Studies 25(2):236–246. Milligan, Susan. 2018. “Sexual Assault Reports Spike in #MeToo Era.” U.S. News & World Report, November 8. Retrieved March 20, 2019 (https://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/ articles/2018-12-27/sexual-assault-reports-spikein-metoo-era) National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. N.d. “Statistics.” Retrieved March 20, 2019 (https:// ncadv.org/statistics) O’Neil, Adrienne, Victor Sojo, Bianca Fileborn, Anna J. Scovelle, and Allison Milner. 2018. “The #MeToo movement: an opportunity in public health?” The Lancet 391,2587-2589. Pew Research Center. 2018. “The #MeToo hashtag has been used roughly 19 million times on Twitter in the past year, and usage often surges around news events.” Retrieved March 21, 2020 (https:// www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2018/10/11/ how-social-media-users-have-discussed-sexualharassment-since-metoo-went-viral/ft_18-10-11_ metooanniversary_hashtag-used-19m_times/) Prasad, Vasundhara. 2018. “If Anyone Is Listening, #MeToo: Breaking The Culture Of Silence Around Sexual Abuse Through Regulating NonDisclosure Agreements And Secret Settlements.” Boston College Law Review 59(7):2506-2549. Rentschler, Carrie A. 2018. “#MeToo and Student Activism against Sexual Violence.” Communication Culture & Critique 11(3):503507.


Rotenberg, Cristine and Adam Cotter. 2018. Policereported sexual assaults in Canada before and after #MeToo, 2016 and 2017. Statistics Canada. March. Satzewich, Vic, and Nikolaos Liodakis. 2017. “Race” and Ethnicity in Canada: A Critical Introduction. 4th ed. Don Mills, Ontario: Oxford University Press. Sigurdsson, Emil L. 2018. “#MeToo – a concern for general practice?” Scandinavian Journal of Primary Health Care 36(1):1-2. Stone, Laura. 2018. “Liberal MP Celina CaesarChavannes on racism and privilege in Canada and why she’s not afraid to lose the next election.” The Globe and Mail, May 26. Retrieved March 19, 2019 (https://www.theglobeandmail. com/politics/article-liberal-mp-celina-caesarchavannes-on-racism-and-privilege-in-canada/) The Canadian Press. 2018. “Sexual-assault complaints increase significantly in the wake of #MeToo, Statscan reports.” The Globe and Mail, November 8. Retrieved March 19, 2019 (https:// www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/articlecanada-experiences-sharp-increase-in-sexualassault-complaints-in-wake/) World Health Organization. 2017. “Violence Against Women.” Retrieved March 20, 2019 (https:// www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/ violence-against-women) Xiong, Ying, Moonhee Cho, and Brandon C. Boatwright. 2018. “Hashtag activism and message frames among social movement organizations: Semantic network analysis and thematic analysis of Twitter during the #MeToo movement.” Public Relations Review 45(1):1023.

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TRANSNATIONAL DIPLOMACY AND THE KOREAN WAVE MANAL CHOUDHRY ABSTRACT The Korean Wave, or Hallyu, is a huge global phenomenon. This paper will focus on how the South Korean government uses the Korean Wave as a soft power tool both on an international and domestic level. This paper will apply a transnational perspective to explain the significance of the Korean Wave in the East Asian region. More specifically, the cases of China and Japan will be used to show how the Korean Wave is used as a diplomatic tool to negotiate relations, trade, and policies between these countries and South Korea. Thus, the relationship between these countries can fluctuate as a result of the Korean Wave. This paper will show that the Korean Wave is not always an advantageous tool for the South Korean government to use, and instead, can put the government at a disadvantage in some situations. The paper will conclude by briefly examining the global significance of the Korean Wave and what it means for globalization. KEYWORDS: Korean Wave, Hallyu, soft power, culture INTRODUCTION The Korean Wave, or Hallyu, is a huge global phenomenon (Jang & Paik 2012; Kim 2017b). The term itself refers to the global popularity of Korean culture and cultural products such as music (i.e. K-pop), TV dramas, movies, dance, and more (Trisni et al. 2019; Jang & Paik 2012; Jin 2018). While most papers focus on the cultural impact of the Korean Wave (Jin 2018), I argue that the Korean Wave is beyond a cultural phenomenon. It can also be analyzed for its economic and political aspects (Huh & Wu 2017; Kwon & Kim 2013; Trisni et al. 2019). In this paper, I will argue that the Korean Wave is a soft power that the South Korean government uses as a tool for foreign politics and diplomacy, specifically focusing on how the Korean Wave impacts transnational relationships between Korea and other East Asian countries, mainly China and Japan.

I will start by briefly providing some background on what the Korean Wave is, and the significance of its impact. There will also be a brief explanation of the concept of soft power and the different ways in which the South Korean government uses the Korean Wave as a soft power tool both on an international level and domestically. Focusing on Asian transnationalism, the paper will then narrow down the global cultural influence of the Korean Wave to explain its significance for the East Asian region. Next, I will present my argument on how the impact of the Korean Wave in China and Japan is used as a diplomatic tool to negotiate relations, trade and policies between these countries and South Korea. While the Korean Wave has a usually positive consumption, it is not always an advantageous tool for the South Korean government to use. It can actually put the government at a disadvantage


in some situations, something this paper aims to explore. Finally, the paper will conclude by briefly examining the global significance of the Korean Wave, going beyond a cultural approach to show its significance for globalization. BACKGROUND The word Hallyu, or “Korean wave,” was a term that originated in China to describe the popularity of Korean popular culture overseas (Oh 2018; Kuwahara 2016; Paik 2018; Shin & Kim 2013). Many consider the popularity of the 2002 Korean soap opera Winter Sonata to be the start of the Korean Wave (Jang 2018; Kuwahara 2016; Paik 2018; Shin & Kim 2013; Takeda 2014). The spread of Hallyu started in East Asia, first spreading to neighbouring countries such as Japan and China and it continues to spread to other regions of the world, including North America and Europe (Oh 2018; Shin & Kim 2013). As a result of this popularity, South Korea has become one of the few non-Western countries that can meaningfully export its cultural forms (Jin 2018). The government of South Korea has taken advantage of the popularity of the Korean Wave as a means of increasing national exports while improving its cultural and public diplomacy and enhancing the image of Korea around the world (Jang & Paik 2012; Kim 2017a). Thus, the Korean Wave became a “soft power” instrument that the South Korean government uses to attain national policy objectives (Ayhan 2017; Kim 2017a). The word “soft power” was first coined by Joseph Nye (2004) in the 1980s to show a non-coercive type of power. This method of power uses attraction and persuasion to attract other parties to voluntarily follow the desires of a country (Ayhan 2017; Chitty 2017; Kim 2017a; Nye 2004; Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

Trisni et al. 2019). The attractiveness of a country’s culture, political ideals, and policies can enhance the country’s soft power (Ayhan 2017; Chitty 2017; Kim 2017a; Trisni et al. 2019). This is in contrast to “hard power,” which is a coercive type of power, often defined by a country’s military or economic might (Ayhan 2017; Chitty 2017; Nye 2004). Therefore, the benefits of utilizing “soft power” is that states do not have to struggle to achieve their goals or interests, because other states would willingly cooperate (Trisni et al. 2019). KOREAN WAVE AS A SOFT POWER TOOL As mentioned above, the South Korean government uses the Korean Wave as a soft power tool. The government recognizes the potential of the cultural industry in South Korea, and as a result, supports it in various ways, including financial investments, introducing favourable policies, and the establishment of government agencies such as the Korean Creative Content Agency (KOCCA), responsible for coordinating the promotion of the Korean content industry (Ayhan 2017; Kim 2017a; KOCCA 2020; Kwon & Kim 2013). In fact, some attribute the proactive role of the South Korean government in its cultural industry as one of the reasons behind the success of the Korean Wave (Kim 2017a; Kwon & Kim 2013). The Korean Wave, as a soft power tool, is utilized in several ways. Firstly, it allows South Korea to not only export its cultural products around the world, such as music, films, and dramas, but also other commodities, such as beauty products, electronics, and consumer goods, as a result of its positive image (Huh & Wu 2017; Soon-Hee 2015; Trisni et al. 2019). Secondly, it has increased the number of visitors to Korea, thus boosting the tourism industry 43


Undergraduate Sociology Journal ¡ Volume III ¡ 2020 of the country (Huh & Wu 2017; Soon-Hee 2015). Overall, the Korean Wave is a means to boost the economy of the country, which it has done, not only through tourism but also through foreign investments in the industry itself, with companies like Netflix investing millions of dollars to produce Korean content (Ayhan 2017; Baek 2020). Furthermore, the South Korean government uses prominent members of the entertainment industry, such as actors and musicians, as ambassadors to promote other industries (Trisni et al. 2019). For example, one South Korean actor, Kim Hyun Joon, was the UN Ambassador for the Social Welfare Program (Trisni et al. 2019). Thus, the Korean Wave is utilized as a soft power tool by the South Korean government both domestically and internationally as a way to strengthen the future position of the country in the global society (Jang 2018). THE SUCCESS OF THE KOREAN WAVE IN EAST ASIA There are many reasons why the Korean Wave has been highly successful in East Asia, even before it became a global phenomenon. Firstly, the reflection of Confucian values in Korean TV has been appreciated by Asian audiences such as the Chinese and Japanese, whose own traditional values are based on Confucianism (Berry 2013; Kim 2017a; Jackson 2017; Shin & Kim 2013). Confucian values are mainly based on aspects of filial piety, humaneness, and ritual, which are shown through various means in Korean TV (Jackson 2017). These dramas bring about feelings of nostalgia for the Japanese audience, who see Korea as a reflection of their past, while for Chinese audiences, the dramas reflect features of their own society (Berry 2013; Shin & Kim 2013). The dramas are also cheaper to license than American TV shows in other East Asian countries (Kim 2017a).

44 Also, K-pop and the Korean music industry are appealing due to the way artists are marketed (Kim 2017a; Shin & Kim 2013). For instance, a global audience is considered when creating certain dramas, music, or artists. The industry caters to the interests of the international market (Kim 2017a; Shin & Kim 2013). For example, certain K-pop groups (BoA, KARA) are more popular in Japan than in Korea due to their ability to speak the local language or be more reflective of the image that Japanese audiences wish to see (Kim 2017a; Shin & Kim 2013; Takeda 2014). As a result of the popularity of the Korean Wave in East Asia, certain projects are undertaken on a transnational level between Korea and other East Asian countries, such as Korean actors starring in Japanese or Chinese films (Shin & Kim 2013; Takeda 2014). Some dramas are produced by transnational production companies (Berry 2013; Takeda 2014), which help to foster friendlier relationships between the countries involved (Kuwahara 2016). A similar sentiment was also expressed in China, which limited the amount of international cultural content that could be shown in the country (Jang 2012; Kim 2017b). However, in the case of China, the fear was that the culture of China and South Korea were becoming synchronized, which affected the self-perception of some Chinese people (Jang 2012). Some critics in China did not like the portrayal of ancient Korea-Chinese relations and their historical settings (Kim 2017b). Thus, the Chinese government restricted airing foreign TV content on television and the internet (Kim 2017b). Still, the Chinese and Korean entertainment industries both collaborate and compete with one another, which makes for an interesting and dynamic relationship (Jang 2012). The restrictions imposed by the Chinese government on foreign programs


directly resulted in collaborations between Korea and China (Berry 2013). These collaborations allow for Korean dramas to continue airing in China as Chinese ventures, allowing them to circumvent the restrictions placed on them by the government (Berry 2013). Interestingly, the Korean Wave, while being used as a diplomatic tool, can also be affected by other diplomatic instances. For example, the Takeshima/ Dokdo islands are islets in the Sea of Japan that are governed by South Korea, but Japan claims sovereignty over them too (Kim 2017b). When the issue of the sovereignty of the Takeshima/Dokdo islands between Japan and South Korea escalates, the Korean cultural industry in Japan is often boycotted (Kim 2017b; Takeda 2014). Similarly, in 2012, the South Korean government brought up the case of comfort women, Korean women that were enslaved in the Japanese Imperial military brothels during World War II. The South Korean government demanded an apology and official acknowledgement from the Japanese government. The move angered Japan, with Japan denying the allegations. It resulted in protests against ethnic Koreans in Japan and the Korean Wave. At the time, Korean businesses in Japan also suffered greatly, with declines in sales. TV networks in Japan stopped airing Korean dramas and books and comics with anti-Korean Wave topics became popular (Kim 2017b). However, despite these disputes and shortcomings, the Korean Wave in Japan, Hanryu, is seen as a hopeful approach to try mending the relationship between the two countries, as it allows for cultural transmission and understanding between the two countries (Takeda 2014). Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

Japan was not the only country to limit South Korean exports during stiffening diplomatic relationships. In 2016, South Korean cultural products were the target of trade retaliation from China, which was displeased with the US missile defence system in South Korea (Kim 2017b). During this time, the Chinese government went as far as to cancel the airing of some South Korean dramas (Kim 2017b). This incident not only affected the entertainment industry but the tourism industry in South Korea as well, as the Chinese government also banned tourist groups from visiting South Korea (Kim 2017b). Thus, this incident shows that while the use of the Korean Wave as a soft power tool can promote aspects of the Korean economy, it can also have an equally disastrous effect. Overall, the South Korean government’s use of the Korean Wave as a soft power diplomatic tool can prove to be challenging in the face of a hard power diplomatic crisis. The South Korean government needs to find a way to alleviate the consequences of using such a tool during diplomatic crises. This is especially important, because the two countries mentioned here, China and Japan, are some of the biggest consumers of Korean culture (Kim 2017b). GLOBAL SIGNIFICANCE OF THE KOREAN WAVE Beyond East Asia, the Korean Wave has had a significant impact on the global market. It has been able to penetrate an industry that was typically dominated by Western nations, especially the United States (Jin 2018). This has led not only to South Korea being recognized on an international stage but also other East Asian countries such as Japan and China being recognized for their creative/ cultural industries (Jin 2018). Thus, the impact of the Korean Wave has been beneficial for South Korea 45


Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020 and its neighbouring countries (Jin 2018). However, South Korea still has a long way to go before it will have the same level of impact that the Western entertainment industries have. CONCLUSION To conclude, the Korean Wave is a global phenomenon that spreads Korean culture through the use of music, dramas, films, and more. The South Korean government uses this as a soft power tool both internationally and domestically. The impact of the Korean wave has been significant around the world but especially in East Asia. However, there have also been instances where the Korean wave has not always been viewed favourably. The tense diplomatic relationship between South Korea, and its neighbouring countries, Japan and China, show that soft power is not the perfect approach to international diplomacy. In fact, in some cases, hard power can trump the effects of soft power. Overall, the Korean Wave is a soft power tool that helps put South Korea on the global map, boosting its image internationally. It is also something that can be used to promote understanding between its neighbouring countries and be a step towards mending tense relationships.

46 REFERENCES Ayhan, Kadir. 2017. “Korea‘s Soft Power and Public Diplomacy under Moon Jae-In Administration: A Window of Opportunity”. in Korea’s Soft Power and Public Diplomacy, edited by Kadir Ayhan. Seoul: Hangang Network. Baek, Byung-yeul. 2020. “Netflix To Invest More In Korean Content.” KoreaTimes. Retrieved 2020 (https://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/ tech/2019/01/133_262635.html). Berry, Chris. 2013. “Transnational Culture in East Asia and the Logic of Assemblage.” Asian Journal of Social Science 41(5):453-470. Chitty, Naren. 2017. “Soft Power, Civic Virtue And World Politics (Section Overview).” in The Routledge Handbook of Soft Power, edited by Naren Chitty, Li Ji, Gary D Rawnsley and Craig Hayden. New York: Routledge. Huh, Chan-Guk and Jie Wu. 2017. “Do Hallyu (Korean Wave) Exports Promote Korea’s Consumer Goods Exports?” Emerging Markets Finance and Trade 53(6):1388–1404. doi: 10.1080/1540496x.2017.1313161 Jackson, Brianna. 2017. “Confucianism and Korean Dramas: How Cultural and Social Proximity, Hybridization of Modernity and Tradition, and Dissimilar Confucian Trajectories Affect Importation Rates of Korean Broadcasting Programs between Japan and China”. Auctus: The Journal of Undergraduate Research and Creativity. 42:1-14. Jang, Gunjoo and Won K. Paik. 2012. “Korean Wave as Tool for Korea’s New Cultural Diplomacy”. Advances in Applied Sociology 02(03):196–202. doi: 10.4236/aasoci.2012.23026 Jang, Kyungjae. 2018. “Between Soft Power and Propaganda: The Korean Military Drama Descendants of the Sun.” Journal of War & Culture Studies 12(1):24–36. doi: 10.1080/17526272.2018.1426209 Jang, Soo Hyun. 2012. “The Korean Wave and Its Implications for the Korea-China Relationship.” Journal of International and Area Studies 19(2):97-113. Retrieved 2019 (http://www.jstor. org/stable/43107242) Jin, Dal Yong. 2018. “Transnationalism, cultural flows, and the rise of the Korean Wave around the globe.” International Communication Gazette


81(2):117–120. doi: 10.1177/1748048518802911 Kim, Hun Shik. 2017a. “The Korean Wave as a Soft Power Public Diplomacy.” in The Routledge Handbook of Soft Power, edited by Naren Chitty, Li Ji, Gary D Rawnsley and Craig Hayden. New York: Routledge. Kim, Hun Shik. 2017b. “When public diplomacy faces trade barriers and diplomatic frictions: the case of the Korean Wave.” Place Branding and Public Diplomacy 14(4):234–244. doi: 10.1057/ s41254-017-0076-4 KOCCA. 2020. Https://Www.Kocca.Kr/En/Main.Do. Kuwahara, Yasue. (Ed.). 2016. Korean wave: Korean popular culture in global context. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan. Kwon, Seung-Ho and Joseph Kim. 2013. “The cultural industry policies of the Korean government and the Korean Wave.” International Journal of Cultural Policy 20(4):422–439. doi: 10.1080/10286632.2013.829052 Nye, Joseph S Jr. 2004. Soft power: the means to success in world politics. New York: PublicAffairs Oh, Youjeong. 2018. Pop City, Korean Popular Culture and the Selling of Place. New York, NY: Cornell University. Schrijver, Nico J., and Vid Prislan. 2015. “Cases Concerning Sovereignty Over Islands Before The International Court Of Justice And The Dokdo/ Takeshima Issue.” Ocean Development & International Law 46(4):281-314. Shin, Solee. And Lanu Kim. 2013. “Organizing K-Pop: Emergence and Market Making of Large Korean Entertainment Houses, 1980–2010.” East Asia 30(4):255-272. doi: 10.1007/s12140-0139200-0 Soon-Hee, Whang. 2015. “The Circulation of Korean Pop.” in Asia Inside Out edited by Eric Tagliacozzo, Helen. F. Siu and Peter. C. Perdue. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Takeda, Atsushi. 2014. “Japanese-Korean International Marriages through the Korean Wave in Japan.” in The Global Impact of South Korean Popular Culture: Hallyu Unbound edited by Valentina Marinescu. Maryland: Lexington Books. Trisni, Sofia, Putiviola Elian Nasir, Rika Isnarti and Ferdian. 2019. “South Korean Government’s Role in Public Diplomacy: A Case Study of Undergraduate Sociology Journal · Volume III · 2020

the Korean Wave Boom.” Andalas Journal of International Studies (AJIS) 8(1):31-42. doi: 10.25077/ajis.8.1.31-42.2019

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LETTER FROM USSU Readers, We at USSU are so grateful that you took the time to read the third volume of the USJ! This journal is a great opportunity to showcase the brilliant work that undergraduate sociology students do at UofT. If it weren’t for the hard work of Dumkele, the Editor-in-Chief, and her Editorial Board, we would not have been able to bring you this celebration of our peers’ accomplishments. For that reason, we owe them many thanks. We hire editors and designers every year, so if you are interested in getting involved with the journal, stay alert to USSU’s social media pages for more information on hiring periods. Also, if you would like to contribute a paper to the journal check our website for submission requirements and review periods. Instagram: @ussu_uoft Facebook: @undergraduatesociologystudentsunion Website: ussu.sa.utoronto.ca Stay well, Jess Kim and Vicky Zhou Co-Presidents, University of Toronto Undergraduate Sociology Students’ Union (USSU)

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