Edinburgh Research Explorer

Olympic ceremony and diplomacy: South Korean, North Korean, and British media coverage of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games’ opening and closing ceremonies

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Related Edinburgh Organisations

Open Access permissions



  • Download as Adobe PDF

    Rights statement: The final version of this paper has been published in Communication & Sport, 2019 by SAGE Publications Ltd, All rights reserved. © Jung Woo Lee, 2019. It is available at: https://doi.org/10.1177/2167479519886544

    Accepted author manuscript, 287 KB, PDF document

    Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives (CC BY-NC-ND)

Original languageEnglish
Article number216747951988654
Pages (from-to)1-24
Number of pages24
JournalCommunication and Sport (C&S)
Publication statusPublished - 7 Nov 2019


In this article, I examined South Korean, North Korean, and British newspaper coverage of the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2018 Winter Olympics in order to identify the diplomatic gestures and conduct presented during these ceremonial events. This study looks at three diplomatically important components of the opening and closing ceremonies: artistic performance, a parade of nations, and the presence of world leaders. The media coverage of these components reveals that (1) the dissemination of a message of peace and unity, (2) the representation of unified Korean identity and Korean cultural heritage, and (3) the communication and negotiation between the high-level state officials are the three most visible acts of diplomacy at these celebrational occasions of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics. In effect, the combination of cultural diplomacy, sport diplomacy, and interstate diplomacy is actively at work during these ritualistic events. Therefore, the Olympic ceremonies present a global podium where dynamic and dramatic games of diplomacy take place.

    Research areas

  • sport diplomacy, Winter Olympics, Pyeongchang 2018, global diplomacy framework, media event

Download statistics

No data available

ID: 119441024