In 2020, Kingston University, London, held the first BTS Global Interdisciplinary Conference. The agenda was to discuss everything BTS- from music to social influence to marketing to culture. And for three consecutive years now, this conference has continued to create academic discourse around the biggest boyband in the world.
Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul recently hosted the 3rd BTS Global Interdisciplinary Conference , and the renowned Brazilian author Paulo Coelho was one of the keynote speakers. He spoke at length about BTS, their influence, and the dynamic between the group and their fans in a pre-recorded interview with Ana Clara.
The author got candid about how he slowly got introduced to Korean culture through Korean movies first. And when he started learning about BTS, he noticed that they were subjected to a lot of unfair hatred, just like he has been throughout his career. Seeing how ARMYs defend the artists, Mr. Coelho decided to take a stand for them as well!
In the past, he has defended and celebrated BTS multiple times publicly. The author admitted that it made him the target of mindless hate every time he did so.
To all those who are always criticizing @BTS_twt , the most important band in the world:
please watch a few videos: I am sure you gonna change your mind.
— Paulo Coelho (@paulocoelho) August 27, 2020
— Paulo Coelho (@paulocoelho) May 22, 2021
But the negativity didn’t stop him from praising BTS’s work ethic and their passion as musicians.
And BTS, I can’t even imagine how hard they work. Wow… You know the dance practices they have to do, the choreography, all that stuff. It must not be an easy life. People only see their sucess but they don’t see the hard work that is behind the success.
-Paulo Coelho at the 3rd BTS Global Interdisciplinary Conference
Touching upon why he decided to use his platform to defend BTS despite knowing its after-effects, Mr. Coelho explained that he believes if you find a situation unfair, you have to fix it yourself. He knew that BTS were not in the wrong, and that they deserve the success they have right now. So, it felt only natural to take a stand.
The Alchemist author also took some time to praise ARMYs for their dedication and courage while supporting BTS.
ARMYs do not shy away from commitments because life is about commitments and has to a lot to do with everything.
He described BTS as an open sea, where ARMYs have the freedom to gather together and self-organize in their own ways.
ARMYs couldn’t be any prouder of their boys once again, as this acknowledgment and the conference altogether showcased how far the reach of their music has gone today!
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