Friday, April 3, 2009

LAT on Jang Ja-yeon suicide

It happened a month ago, but the Los Angeles Times has an article on the suicide of "Boys Before Flowers" actress Jang Ja-yeon (장자연/; MR: Chang Chayŏn).

The death of 27-year-old Miss Chang is still making headline news, however, because of the allegations that she was sexually abused by her managers and other high-ups in the Korean entertainment industry, leading to a sense of despair that prompted her suicide. The LAT story provides a good overview for those who haven't been keeping up:
The plot soon thickened with the discovery of a purported suicide note that claims she had been repeatedly forced to have sex with entertainment executives, whose names haven't been revealed.

The story has since featured more plot twists than an episode of "Boys Over Flowers," which featured Jang as a social-climbing high school bully: One of her managers attempted suicide, and police are seeking to extradite a former manager from Japan.

As police continue their investigation, newspaper and TV reports have brought near-daily speculation on the identities of the TV executives. And although it is still unclear who might have forced Jang into sexual relations, commentators are calling into question the secret relationship between power and celebrity in South Korea.
There is a brief mention of this being part of a string of celebrity suicides, something I noted in my own post on this tragedy.

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