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Korea: The Impossible Country
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tallullahelle



Joined: 23 Feb 2011
Location: 223

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 12:58 am    Post subject: Korea: The Impossible Country Reply with quote

Here's an interview I did with Daniel Tudor about his new book, Korea: The Impossible Country. It was really interesting talking to him and he had a lot to say about the country, including some predictions for the future.

http://chincha.co.uk/2012/11/korea-the-impossible-country/
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jdog2050



Joined: 17 Dec 2006

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 2:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

WOW! This is actually kind of awesome. I love books like this on Korea--not dry numbers and history, but real interviews from sources that you don't normally get.

The last book I read in a similar vein was "Korea Bug: The Compilation". From all accounts, the guy who wrote it was kind of a *beep*, but DAMNIT he could interview.
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tallullahelle



Joined: 23 Feb 2011
Location: 223

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 2:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Highly recommend the book! I really enjoyed it, so much of the information he got from the interviewees is fascinating. It gave me a much greater understanding of Korea and it's well written.
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Squire



Joined: 26 Sep 2010
Location: Jeollanam-do

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 3:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Before I came to Korea I already knew quite a bit by reading The Koreans and practically every FAQ on this site, along with all of the comments for those threads and tons of other threads too. If this book is similar to The Koreans then I'll buy it. It sounds like it is
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newb



Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Location: Korea

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 4:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I will buy the book and read it, but I have doubts about its insightfulness. Because what I've learned over the years in Korea is that people are not very honest and truthful to foreigners especially on the topics of their internal problems and shortfalls. More often then not, they opt to sugar coat it then to lose face to foreigners.
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PatrickGHBusan



Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Location: Busan (1997-2008) Canada 2008 -

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 4:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks like an interesting read and a nice departure from the usual "Bob's adventures as a teacher in Korea" type of book.

Will check it out.
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nautilus



Joined: 26 Nov 2005
Location: Je jump, Tu jump, oui jump!

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

DanielTudor wrote:
When I first came I would get on the metro and old men would stare at me with this get-out-of-my-country look, but now no one cares.


Those stares still happen.

Only difference is that in time they cease to bother you and you so you notice them less.

Koreas not exactly a tolerant multi-ethnic cosmopolitan epicentre just yet.


Last edited by nautilus on Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:07 am; edited 1 time in total
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PatrickGHBusan



Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Location: Busan (1997-2008) Canada 2008 -

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

nautilus wrote:
DanielTudor wrote:
When I first came I would get on the metro and old men would stare at me with this get-out-of-my-country look, but now no one cares.


Those stares still happen a lot.

Only difference is that in time they cease to bother you and you so you notice them less.


Yeah because you automatically know better than this guy... Laughing
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nautilus



Joined: 26 Nov 2005
Location: Je jump, Tu jump, oui jump!

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

PatrickGHBusan wrote:

Yeah because you automatically know better than this guy... Laughing


?

I know when an ajosshi gives me an angry stare.

My experience is slightly different to the author of that book. That does not mean either of us wrong, just that we have differing impressions.


I agree that passive-agressive stares are less frequent than ten years ago.
But to say "now nobody cares' is a glib exagerration.
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tiger fancini



Joined: 21 Mar 2006
Location: Testicles for Eyes

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

nautilus wrote:

Koreas not exactly a tolerant multi-ethnic cosmopolitan epicentre just yet.


I wonder if you can name one country that truly is? Being a Brit, I can only really comment on the situation there. There are parts of Britain, including London, where being the wrong colour will get you something much more severe than a passive-aggressive stare.
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PatrickGHBusan



Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Location: Busan (1997-2008) Canada 2008 -

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

nautilus wrote:
PatrickGHBusan wrote:

Yeah because you automatically know better than this guy... Laughing


?

I know when an ajosshi gives me an angry stare.

My experience is slightly different to the author of that book. That does not mean either of us wrong, just that we have differing impressions.


I agree that passive-agressive stares are less frequent than ten years ago.
But to say "now nobody cares' is a glib exagerration.


Seriously, the guy covers Korea for a living for the Economist. He speaks colloquial Korean. I think his opinion has some worth....

As for staring, it is a funny issue because a lot of people generate more staring or see more out there then there probably is when they glare about looking out for people who might stare. Give it a try nautilus, check out other foreigners out and about and I bet it will not take long before you spot one of those angry-challenge-in-the-eyes fellow foreigner who has his head ona swivel looking out for all possible offensive staring.

Then, look at how many stares he or she provokes by doing this...it is hilarious.


Last edited by PatrickGHBusan on Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:14 am; edited 1 time in total
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PatrickGHBusan



Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Location: Busan (1997-2008) Canada 2008 -

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

tiger fancini wrote:
nautilus wrote:

Koreas not exactly a tolerant multi-ethnic cosmopolitan epicentre just yet.


I wonder if you can name one country that truly is? Being a Brit, I can only really comment on the situation there. There are parts of Britain, including London, where being the wrong colour will get you something much more severe than a passive-aggressive stare.


Indeed, a lot of people forget what their home countries are actually like while they live abroad...
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Who's Your Daddy?



Joined: 30 May 2010
Location: Victoria, Canada.

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

^^works in reverse too.
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mayorgc



Joined: 19 Oct 2008

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PatrickGHBusan wrote:
nautilus wrote:
PatrickGHBusan wrote:

Yeah because you automatically know better than this guy... Laughing


?

I know when an ajosshi gives me an angry stare.

My experience is slightly different to the author of that book. That does not mean either of us wrong, just that we have differing impressions.


I agree that passive-agressive stares are less frequent than ten years ago.
But to say "now nobody cares' is a glib exagerration.


Seriously, the guy covers Korea for a living for the Economist. He speaks colloquial Korean. I think his opinion has some worth....

As for staring, it is a funny issue because a lot of people generate more staring or see more out there then there probably is when they glare about looking out for people who might stare. Give it a try nautilus, check out other foreigners out and about and I bet it will not take long before you spot one of those angry-challenge-in-the-eyes fellow foreigner who has his head ona swivel looking out for all possible offensive staring.

Then, look at how many stares he or she provokes by doing this...it is hilarious.


I'm not sure if anybody challenged Tudor's opinion.
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hiamnotcool



Joined: 06 Feb 2012

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It sounds like his intention is to put a positive spin on it, so if it's a little too polished that's ok with me. He seems pretty open about the way he is approaching the country in the book. However, I was put off by this quote...


"Chincha: How about three words to describe Korea?

Daniel: Human, extreme and fun."

Human?
It sounds like a passive aggressive racist answer, Korea is human...X country is not human? I realize I'm probably reading too much into this but it was just a really poorly thought out answer. And yes, I realize this guy is a white boy. Aside from that it sounds like he will be able to shed light on a lot of questions people have about, which is a good thing.
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