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A deep dive into the perspective of a black K-pop stan


Being a K-pop fan, or “stan”, will always be one of the best decisions I have ever made. However, as a Black (African American) stan, there are a lot of stipulations that can come from venturing into K-music. While it doesn’t come from K-pop itself, being a part of the community can be a little nerve-wracking. So why do I do it? Why am I so proud of it? K-pop has become a huge part of my life and still is, so there must be something worth it right? Let me explain.


Jingle Ball 2023, Dallas TX
Jingle Ball 2023, Dallas TX

Childhood and upbringing


Growing up in a small town, K-pop wasn’t something I knew of at all. And while my parents have always been supportive of anything that interest me, they expected me to continue listening to the soulful music I grew up with. I still do of course, but becoming a K-pop fan in 2018 really changed my perspective of my music taste. The content, the community, and just the overall closeness you feel with your favorite artists were so different from what I knew. It gave me so many creative outlets that I was hooked on it! 


What's the issue with Black fans?


So what is the issue that makes it a little harder for us Black fans? It unfortunately is just another form of what we face in any social setting. Since we aren’t as accepted, we sometimes get invalidated in the stan community. If we call out something we find is a direct hit to our culture, speaking out on it can be intimidating. Nonetheless, educating other fans on our culture is always a positive and we are continuing to break more barriers. 


Me at P1Harmony’s P1oneer Tour in Nashville 2023
Me at P1Harmony’s P1oneer Tour in Nashville 2023

K-pop has so many qualities that make these little things worth it. The idols who work so hard to produce music, choreography, and videography for their fans, concerts, and fan meetings are just some of the reasons we Black fans stay in this community.


Also, from my perspective growing up and being around so many others in my culture, we have always used music as part of our language, regardless of what country it comes from. Pushing through and enjoying something that has stuck with me is part of living. Everything I have gained during my experience as a K-pop stan, friends, experiences, and even writing this article right now has made it worth it. 


What are some of your notable experiences as a K-pop stan? Leave us a comment and check out more gritty perspectives from Dojeon here!


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