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On Bts

On Bts

Pop Music, Fandom, Sincerity

Lenika Cruz
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A love letter to Korean pop sensation BTS and an ode to fandom. An Atlantic Edition, featuring long-form journalism by Atlantic writers, drawn from contemporary articles or classic storytelling from the magazine's 165-year archive.

The supersonic rise of the Korean pop group BTS may seem enigmatic to some, but for Lenika Cruz, senior culture editor at The Atlantic, their worldwide fame is obvious. As Cruz argues in On BTS: Pop Music, Fandom, Sincerity, the group's trajectory--debuting on a relatively obscure label in Korea to becoming a global household name in just a few years--is a natural result of their authenticity, artistry, energy, social conscientiousness, and general coolness. As a non-English-language band finding record-breaking international success, BTS is helping usher in a fresh, more inclusive era in the music industry. In this love letter to the once-in-a-generation pop sensation, Cruz narrates her own unexpected journey into the fandom, and in doing so might welcome you in, too.


Lenika Cruz is a senior editor at The Atlantic where she has been a staffer on the culture section since 2014. She has edited stories that have been nominated for James Beard Awards and included in anthologies such as Best Food Writing, and one that was named as a Pulitzer Prize finalist. In addition to The Atlantic, Lenika’s essays, reporting, and criticism have appeared in L.A. WeeklyGlamourThe RumpusEast Bay Express, and Guam’s Pacific Daily News. She has spoken about race, culture, and media for the Asian American Journalists Association, the Washington National Cathedral, and Pomona College’s Humanities Studio. She has appeared as a guest on NPR’s Code Switch and Pop Culture Happy HourThe Atlantic’s Review podcast, Blank Check, KPCC, and other radio shows. She is a volunteer contributing editor for the street newspaper Street Sense. She graduated from UCLA in 2012 with a BA in English. 


  • Publisher: ‎Atlantic Editions (January 10, 2023)
  • Language: ‎English
  • Paperback: ‎96 pages
  • ISBN-10: ‎1638930643
  • ISBN-13: ‎9781638930648
  • Item Weight: ‎1.11 pounds
  • Dimensions: ‎4.5 x 0.26 x 7.25 inches
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