Home Scandal and Gossip What is it with Korean celebrities that keep committing suicide?

What is it with Korean celebrities that keep committing suicide?

Jang Ja-yeon
Jang Ja-yeon
Jang Ja-yeon. Courtey The Guardian

Depression and self-loathing in Korea.

According to the Associated Press, the recent suicide of Korean model Daul Kim, 20, in her Parisian apartment marks a mysterious string of suicides amongst Korean celebrities. Apparently, her death brings the suicide death toll to 9 this year.

One has to ask why this is the prevailing wisdom of Koreans who go on to become public figures. In a country like the USA, such public attention would normally lead to excessive notions of immortality and self adulation. It seems to work the other way amongst Korean celebrity.

Reports AP in describing the death of another celebrity earlier this year:

In April of this year, actress Jang Ja-yeon committed suicide at home and left a seven-page letter describing sexual abuse she had had to endure at the hands of those who controlled her career.

And again we see the anguish and torment when another celebrity has to deal with her inner closet for public consumption:

From The Guardian:

Ahn Jae-hwan, a 36-year-old actor, was reportedly mired in debt. Choi Jin-sil, 39, was worried she had pressured Ahn into suicide. Model Kim Ji-hoo, 23, was harassed on the net after coming out. Singer Lee Seo-hyun, 30, was also under attack on the net over sexuality. Actor Kim Suk-gyun, 30, was said to have been depressed. Transgender actor Jang Chae-won, 26, left a suicide note online.

Could it be in a culture where privacy and less-than-stellar accreditation of dubious events can lead to a degrading in social status and self-contempt? In a culture like the US where such revelations and bold announcements are boldly celebrated and cemented with book deals, it seems the reverse is in operation in Korea and, dare we suspect, other nations with sublime character building.

In any event, if you want to be famous in Korea, make sure you have the thickest skin because loneliness and self-scorn as opposed to lucrative book deals are the preferred norm.

AP News
Top S Korean model found hanged in Paris apartment
The Guardian
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