“Gangnam style” is a Korean neologism that describes a way of life, or a ‘lifestyle’, associated with the Gangnam district in Seoul. These areas are known for their ultra-delicate women and conspicuous consumption of coffee. The song satirises the lifestyle, and the lyrics in the Gangnam style dance parody material wealth and class.
“Gangnam” is the name of a fashionable part of Seoul, where the singer Psy grew up. The lyrics may be a satire of the affluent districts, where Psy’s posh lifestyle is common. The area has one of the most expensive shopping malls in Korea, a world-renowned school district, and many wealthy individuals. However, the song also features thousands of working-class families.
Whether Gangnam Style refers to a gang, a triad, or a ‘gang bang’-type scenario is not clear. The lyrics’ underlying meaning is not clear, but the video’s cultural context is revealing. American audiences, like many others, are drawn to foreign things and are not always aware of their cultural context. Therefore, it is important to understand what a gangnam style dance refers to.
The video of the song “Gangnam style” was an instant sensation, and PSY’s popularity has exploded since its release. The video of the song has been played on many U.S. shows, including MTV. It is interesting to note that PSY has explained the song’s lyrics as a tribute to a rich neighborhood. It is also a reference to the Korean term “Oppa,” which means an older brother.
Besides the rap craze, the song also has a social meaning. The song has become a worldwide phenomenon, and has even inspired world leaders to try the dance. Former US President Barack Obama praised the song as “a symbol of world peace.”
While this video has become a global phenomenon, the South Korean artist PSY didn’t intend to conquer America with the song. Rather, he came to the U.S. to promote the video. He even taught Britney Spears to dance on Ellen, and has also appeared on Saturday Night Live and the Today show. The video has even been viewed by 89 million people!