2024 Midwest Media Contest

Korean Media Essay Contest

The theme of this year’s Midwest media contest centers around “K-Food: Globalization and Cultural Identity.”

Throughout the last few decades, Korean organizations have made an effort to promote Korean cuisine to the international community. From the serving of kimchi in the 1988 Seoul Olympics to the myriad representations of K-food in Korean dramas, music, mukbang, films, documentaries, and reality TV shows, Korean food has become a major recognizable and desirable international cuisine.

For this year’s video essay contest, participants will explore the ways in which K-Food has found its place in the saturated and competitive global/virtual market of international gastronomy. Students can choose any medium (literature, documentary, film, drama, reality TV shows, etc.) of their choice that represents the globalization and cultural identity of K-Food. Some examples include:

  • Dramas such as Jewel in the Palace, Itaewon Class, Coffee Prince
  • Reality TV Shows such as Chef and My Fridge
  •  YouTube channels such as Korean Englishman

Other approaches may include:

  • History and evolution of coffee/coffee shops in Korea
  • Expansion of the brands CJ and Bibigo
  • Korean American celebrity chefs such as Roy Choi, Anne Kim, David Chang
  • Korean chefs Baek Jong-won, Maangchi


  • Any undergraduate or graduate students currently enrolled in universities in the Midwest


  • 5-7 mins video presentation
  • Critical analysis (historical, social, political, or cultural) of K-Food

Submission Method

  • Upload video to YouTube (public or unlisted)
  • Submit the video link on this form


  •  Videos will be judged on your critical analysis of food based on its relation to globalization, cultural identity, and social/historical/political contexts
  •  Videos will be judged on the depth of research and poignant argument
  •  Videos will be judged on creative storytelling and creative editing (cuts, music, graphics, etc.)

Deadline: February 29, 2024

If you have any questions about the project, please contact:

  • iks@indiana.edu
  • 812-856-4043

Previous Contests

Our 2022 Contest

The Novel for this year was "I Met Loh Kiwan" by Cho Haejin.

Read the winning essays

Our 2021-2022 Contest

The Novel for this year was "Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982" by Cho Nam-joo.

Read the winning essays

Our 2019 Contest

The Novel for this year was "The Vegetarian" by Han Kang.

Read the winning essays