Expanding on Squid Game’s Popularity

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Rarely has a show captured the zeitgeist like Squid Game has the last few weeks. Rarer still is for this popularity to be attained by a foreign language series.

Squid Game is a dark and hyper-violent series on Netflix that has topped the streamer’s top 10 list since its premier. Its dystopian take on present day South Korean society, where debtors with no other prospects are corralled together to play childhood games with a deadly twist, has garnered comparisons to The Hunger Games and Battle Royale.

While libraries can’t offer Squid Game on DVD for patrons, we can use its popularity to highlight some of our resources. Many fans of the show may not be familiar with South Korean entertainment and culture and will become curious about exploring what’s out there.

Hoopla, for instance, has a nice selection of Korean films, including popular titles that would appeal to fans of Squid Game like Train to Busan. Hoopla also includes many K-pop albums, including BTS, who have already topped the charts in America.

Libraries can also highlight books in their collection that will appeal to those looking for a similar experience to Squid Game.

New York Public Library put together a read-alike list that you can jump off from.

While Squid Game has become popular worldwide, this has also caused more of a social media conversation around translation and whether some of the meaning and characterization of the show is lost to translation (whether viewing the series with subtitles or dubbed).

Salon has an article on the subject which outlines a bit of where the conversation around this issue is. Users across platforms are showing non-Korean speakers how some of the translation used for the show is not necessarily coming across and where that can change how a viewer is engaging with the show.

While non-Korean speaking fans can’t quickly learn the language to a high proficiency, this is an opportunity to highlight learning language options like Mango and duolingo.

Also, CIA World Fact Book‘s page on South Korea can provide some basic information on South Korea that viewers may not already know. CIA World Fact Book is a nice resource for this type of need–just to provide scaffolding for future understanding.

These are just a few ways to capitalize on Squid Game‘s popularity while providing a nice way to highlight some of our resources!

Jeff, South Park

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In any language, it’s still Overdrive!

There are a couple different ways to find e-books in languages other than English on Overdrive. First, you can click “Subject” at the top and then scroll down to find a “Non-English” subject like fiction, nonfiction, or even more specifically narrowed by age, like “Non-English Young Adult Fiction” in just one click.

The other option is to start with any search, subject, or interest level, and then narrow to the specific language you want in the side menu.

Don’t forget you can always toggle Overdrive to a different language mode altogether, so that the entire browsing and checkout experience appears in either Spanish or Chinese. That option shows up in the upper right corner of the website.

The Libby app has language options too, but they vary by your device and its operating system. Just click Libby and check under “Settings” however, and she’ll walk you through how it’s done!

– Heather Auman, Western Allegheny Community Library

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The many languages of Hoopla

This week we want to highlight all the languages Hoopla digital has to offer for children.

Using Hoopla’s Kids Mod, you can filter the audiobooks by language.

There are currently 23 language options for children’s audiobooks. Alongside these wonderful language options, there is also many bilingual titles available in Spanish, French, Chinses, Portuguese, German, Hebrew, Japanese, and more.

Gabi – Robinson Library

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Learn Something New With Hoopla

Hoopla has great ebooks, audiobooks, movies, and more but did you know they have a collection just waiting to help you learn something new? If you click on ebooks on the main page of Hoopla and then choose “Genres & Collections” there is a collection just waiting to be picked through that offers a wonderful selection of books to teach you something new.

You can learn how to bake great cookies, how to do pottery, journaling, make your own wine, or even pick up a new language! The possibilities seem every growing with 77 different titles to read and 77 different interests to choose from!

Browse for a new interest, hobby, or learning experience with Hoopla!

Happy Learning!

-Adrianne, Northland Public Library

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