Site Search:
 
Speak Korean Now!
Teach English Abroad and Get Paid to see the World!
Korean Job Discussion Forums Forum Index Korean Job Discussion Forums
"The Internet's Meeting Place for ESL/EFL Teachers from Around the World!"
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Why do foreigners have so much trouble learning Korean?
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Korean Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> General Discussion Forum
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
tomato



Joined: 31 Jan 2003
Location: I get so little foreign language experience, I must be in Koreatown, Los Angeles.

PostPosted: Thu Aug 02, 2007 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

browneyedgirl wrote:
I knew a guy that lived in Cuba for 10 years and he never learned Spanish.


Thanks to people like him, Latin-American leaders like Castro have an easy time rallying the people against gringos.

Remember the Spectrum English scandal a few years ago?
It can happen here, too.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Sody



Joined: 14 May 2006

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 3:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vox wrote:


Well, what she basically said was this:
-she loves the way Koreans come together, looks like a 'sea of red' when they wear their red apparel.
-Canadians can't play soccer. (big laugh) They play ice hockey well.
-Education in Canada is virtually free, from elementary to high school. They pay private lessons but just for hobbies.
-In Quebec these things are the most cheap (the cheapest.) Then there's some friendly banter about paying too much tax and how it's all for the benefit of the girl from Quebec. (one of the Canadian girls is from Quebec)
- the Korean host said Apgujeong women are more beautiful perhaps than Canadian women. But the Canadian woman agreed. Shocked Then a Korean woman said many Korean women are very beautiful perhaps because they have plastic surgery. Then the Canadian said you can always find the plastic surgery patients in the jimjilbangs because their 'worked on' parts stay too red for too long a time (presumably the red doesn't blend with the skin on the other side of the cut? I didn't know that.)
-Canadians just use the car emergency lights for real emergencies, (hazard lights?) but Koreans use them for everything it seems, even to say 'sorry' or 'thank you' etc.
-the host goes off about how Korean men criticize Korean women drivers with sexist comments and the Canadian girl says, 'in Canada it's exactly the same. Our men say things like, 'why aren't you working at home cooking something, or why aren't you at home and pregnant?' (I don't know a single Canadian man under 40, of all the Canadian men I've ever known who say things like this. I really don't. And I know a lot of people in Canada. But I suppose such men exist although I don't have to suppose the female equivalent exists. But I digress.)
-She goes to some length to describe the nature of insults Canadian men hurl at Canadian women drivers but when she's pressed for details on what Canadian women say to respond, she declines with a surly protectiveness saying things like 'ah, no, I can't (divulge that precious secret)' like that.
-Taxi drivers. She talks about how her Korean is good enough to argue with taxi drivers who write her off as an unknnowledgeable foreigner who can't argue prices. She uses 'two-dollar' as an example and how she can respond nowadays.

So she's quite Canadian but not necessarily running down Canada as you half-jokingly asked.


Yes, I was only joking of course Smile But thanks for the translation Vox.

I've actually dated non-white women who put down their own race so I jokingly made a comment about the video. It's what women do to appease the pride of men of other races. Smile

I like your recommendations for learning Korean. I would also like to add that I think it's best to get a bare minimum of learning before going to Korea. That way when you do find a good friend you aren't starting from zero.

Sody
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
venus



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Location: Near Seoul

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 4:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's not so much that non- Koreans have trouble learning Korean, it's more that no one can be fully bothered as they know they wont use it once they leave and most westerners (not all) don't really connect or want to connect to Korean culture.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
samd



Joined: 03 Jan 2007

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 7:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

tomato wrote:
samd wrote:
He doesn't need any empathy, he's a pain.


Does the second statement imply the first statement?
I was taught in college that empathy and soul-searching were the answers to all of the world's problems.

Quote:
Immediately after my post he wrote a pointless rambling long post about his experience learning Mandarin (I doubt he can speak well, or knows much about the language)


I am always relieved when I hear that Korean is difficult compared with other languages.
That assures me that the problem is not at my end.

Quote:
. . . and then includes a longwinded plug for the overpriced language school he attends.


What do you expect, that he is a stockholder?
That he is being promised a commission?

I don't know about his language school, but I usually prefer classes in a skill, such as a third language or a musical instrument.
Korean language teachers have a nasty habit of falling back on the students' own first language, and I disapprove of that.
I once atended a Korean class in which all the other students were from other Asian countries, so the teacher didn't speak any English.
I liked that.

Quote:
Saying "Korean is too hard" is a cop out.


I have heard other contributors to this thread say that Korean is too hard, but I haven't heard Ghost say that.

Quote:
Plenty of foreigners have learnt Korean well, as can any of us.


I agree with the second part, but I don't know about the first part.
I attended a large gathering of wegukin's at an orphanage, and I didn't see any of the other wegukin's speaking Korean.

Quote:
Hard work is the answer. I study hard, and it annoys me to hear people trying to find negative excuses for their own failures.


I agree. Hard work is the answer.
But isn't discussion of the difficulties also constructive?
Without such discussion, a student could become emotion-laden, and those emotions could become destructive.

Quote:
It brings me down.


Then you also need a dose of empathy.
It is more constructive to say how you feel than to attack someone else.
Your attack on Ghost me the impression, and probably gave Ghost the impression, that you were attacking him for nothing more than malicious pleasure.

Quote:
Discouraged Korean language students need positivity, not a negative thread full of lazy people who have already given up on themselves blaming Koreans for their lack of Korean language skill. Ridiculous.


Yes, I've seen the messages in this thread by those who have given up.
But they don't bring me down.
On the contrary, they make me feel proud for being more persistent than someone else.
Do they bring you down?
I'm sorry if they do.

Isn't this thread also open to those with constructive suggestions?
I have made a few constructive suggestions, and I hope that they have helped some people.

Quote:
Next time a Korean insists on using their superior English with you, say something like,

"I really love Korea and learning Korean, but my problem is that I don't get enough practise. Can you please speak to me in Korean only?"

You'll find most Koreans happy to try, and then you might find that maintaining a friendship this way isn't as easy as it sounds,


I might try that line--if I can stand talking to an Anglophone Korean that long.
Usually I can't even stand to look at them.
You may send me a response similar to the response you sent Ghost,
but I can't stand people who look down their noses at me.
I was the youngest in my family, and I think 18 years of living with people who are bigger, better, and smarter than I am is enough to ask of anybody.

Quote:
. . . and that you fall back on English for communication purposes yourself.


I despise speaking English to Koreans.
It's an affront to my pride.
That's one reason that I seek situations in which I CAN'T speak English to Koreans.


Tomato, you seem to be a dedicated Korean learner, so at least we have one thing in common, but that's about it.

Speaking of empathy, where's yours for the "Anglophone Koreans" that you can't stand to look at? They want to practise with you, for the same reasons that you want to practise with them. Ever heard of language exchange? Try it one day. For someone who hates being looked down upon, you sure do a lot of it.

Have you ever considered that maybe your problems finding Koreans who want to talk to you stem from you rather than from them? Judging by your posts in this thread, if I was a Korean I doubt I'd want to spend much time around you either. No wonder you end up speaking to children in the library. Then again, maybe I'm wrong and you're a very nice person to have a chat with. If so, I apologise.

I disagree that it is difficult to find Koreans to talk to. The fact that there is a large number of Koreans who I wish I could communicate better with inspires me to study harder.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
gmat



Joined: 29 Jan 2003

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 8:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tomato:
Quote:
I was taught in college that empathy and soul-searching were the answers to all of the world's problems.


Any way you can get a tuition refund?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
just another day



Joined: 12 Jul 2007
Location: Living with the Alaskan Inuits!!

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 9:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

tomato,

while i can see where u are coming from, maybe u are a bit too harsh?

if you see a westerner in korea, isn't the first instinct to speak english to him or her? isn't their first instinct to speak english to you?


i mean, have you ever seen two westerners speak korean to each other when they meet???

i agree with tomato tho, i believe empathy and soul searching is the answer to the world's problems. this is more of a west coast philosophical viewpoint.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
tomato



Joined: 31 Jan 2003
Location: I get so little foreign language experience, I must be in Koreatown, Los Angeles.

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 10:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Too many foreigners for too long have made excuses for Koreans Anglophoning us.
Let's look at some of those excuses:

MYTH: We can expect this sort of thing in any foreign country.

REALITY: That is not true. In South America, I often went for days at a time without a South American ever speaking English to me. The South American people were supportive not only of my learning Spanish, but of my learning one of the South American aboriginal languages.

MYTH: Their assumption is well grounded. Most foreigners DON'T know Korean.

REALITY: In our own culture, stereotypes are always considered unjustifiable. Why the sudden change once we arrive in Korea?

MYTH: Most of them speak English better than most of us speak Korean. It is easier for them to speak to us in English.

REALITY: By that logic, no one should ever go in the water before learning how to swim.

MYTH: They are just trying to help you, so you should appreciate.

REALITY: I never knew anyone who appreciated having their intelligence insulted--at least not before I met foreigners in Korea.

Children resent having their intelligence insulted. I don't know if it is still true, but at the time I left, a child in my country would say, "Well, duh!" whenever told a fact which he or she already knew.

MYTH: They don't have anyone to practice English with.

REALITY: In my first year French class in high school, all of students had all the other classes together. All day long, we borrowed pencils from each other, teased each other, and made fun of the teachers, all in French. We spoke French in the lunch room, in the locker room, and in the hallway--all with no help from a native speaker. Consequently, we learned French.

It is ridiculous that the millions of Korean people studying English will not practice English with each other.

MYTH: They are glad to meet a native speaker whom they could practice English with. They appreciate you, so you should appreciate them.

REALITY: No one else likes being appreciated for only one trait. A famous violinist was invited to a dinner party. Although it was not specifically spelled out, it was expected that he would entertain the other dinner guests with a solo. The hostess greeted him and asked, "Where is your violin?" The violinist took a deep bow and said, "My violin sends its regards. It does not dine."

MYTH: You are being selfish. You want to practice Korean, but you don't want the Koreans to practice English.

REALITY: I thought that the foreigner gets the right of way. I have heard foreigners from all over the world speaking English in my country, so I thought we got the same privilege.

We even grant that privilege to native speakers of languages which we have studied. BlondieLass said that she has studied French in England. When she meets French visitors in England, she first makes allows for the possibility that the other person might want to practice French.

If that is not too much to ask of us, I don't see why it is too much to ask of others.

MYTH: They don't think we're stupid, they just think we don't know Korean.

REALITY: They think we're stupid. Excitinghead asked about the price of sandwiches in a bakery, and the clerk told him that they were sandwiches. Son Deureo! had students who were amazed that he knew the chemical formula for water.

For that matter, they don't even give us due credit for knowing English. They hire Korean teachers to teach English grammar because they don't think we know the English grammatical terms. They never explain why they don't have to hire foreign teachers to teach Korean grammar class.

In their eyes, we not only don't know anything, we're not interested in learning anything. I recently applied as a student in a yoga academy. When I first went in, the teacher came to the door and informed me that the dermatology clinic was across the hall.

MYTH: If we deal with the Korean people patiently and diplomatically, this problem will eventually right itself.

REALITY: For two hundred years, that is what the Black people in the United States said. Two hundred years later, the White majority was as hateful as ever. It was only when the Black people started protesting that they started winning concessions.

So what shall we do?
Learn from history and start kicking up a fuss now?
Or tolerate two hundred more years of this foolishness?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
tomato



Joined: 31 Jan 2003
Location: I get so little foreign language experience, I must be in Koreatown, Los Angeles.

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

samd wrote:
Speaking of empathy, where's yours for the "Anglophone Koreans" that you can't stand to look at?


I've never thought about that.
What would be a good empathetic line for a Korean who speaks English to me?
"I realize you feel contemptuous toward me"?
"I realize you think I'm a weak and helpless infant"?

Quote:
They want to practise with you, for the same reasons that you want to practise with them.


If they want to practice English, they are welcome to go to my country.
Everyone there will speak English to them.
Why can't they return the favor?

Quote:
Ever heard of language exchange? Try it one day.


I already spend an entire work week speaking English.
If that's not enough to satisfy them, I'm sorry.

Koreans get to go to my country and practice Korean PERIOD.
Anyone else gets to go to my country and practice Korean PERIOD.
Nobody complains, nobody demands a reward.
Why, then, do we have to comply with a long list of restrictions?

Quote:
For someone who hates being looked down upon, you sure do a lot of it.


How am I looking down on anyone else?
I never said THEY were weak and helpless infants.

just another day wrote:
if you see a westerner in korea, isn't the first instinct to speak english to him or her? isn't their first instinct to speak english to you?

i mean, have you ever seen two westerners speak korean to each other when they meet???


That's not quite the right analogy.
It wouldn't surprised to see two Koreans speaking Korean in my country.
I would love, however, to see Koreans get a dose of their own medicine.
Please see my following post.


Last edited by tomato on Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:02 pm; edited 2 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
tomato



Joined: 31 Jan 2003
Location: I get so little foreign language experience, I must be in Koreatown, Los Angeles.

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Korean Explosion

When the twelve-hour flight arrived in Los Angeles, 김선생 stood up and stretched his legs. "So here I am in the United States!" he thought. "Now to practice my English!"

For years, he had dreams of living overseas. He was going to be immersed in the foreign language. He was going to speak the foreign language to everyone he met. Everyone he met was going to speak the foreign language to him. Everyone he met was going to help him in every way possible. Now this dream was finally going to come true!

Along with the other passengers, he filed quickly out of the aircraft, smiling back at the flight attendants saying "안녕 가세요.

He followed the bilingual signs pointing to the customs office. The man at the desk said, "여권 주세요. The man stamped the passport and said, "감사합니다. He answered with a grumble, "You're welcome."

Next, our future pedagogue followed the bilingual signs pointing to the baggage claim. He ignored a uniformed gentleman who said, "여기 기다리세요.

He found his luggage and took the door under the bilingual exit sign. A group of children whispered "There's a Korean!" and shouted "만나서 반갑습니다! He smiled and waved back.

Next, Mister Kim stood in line at the currency exchange. The woman at the window handed him a sheet of paper. She pointed to one line and said "이름, then pointed to another line and said, "주소. Then she pointed to a third line and he said, "Yes, yes, I know!"

The weary traveller collected his money and walked toward the nearest bench. On the way there, he fought himself loose from a man who grabbed him and said, "미국에 오신 것을 환영합니다!

He plopped down on the nearest bench, opened his laptop and logged into the KSLcafe site. He scrolled through the many ads, all written in Korean, promising jobs in major cities with a large Korean population.

Suddenly, our distraught Websurfter noticed an ad written English. "Live in beautiful Iowa--the fairest state of all the West!" At the top of the ad was the business name of a recruiter, Iowa KSL.

He clicked on the link. The Iowa KSL site showed listings like none that he had ever seen before. "Live in Dolliver--small but friendly. Population: 77." "Come to the town of Valerie--home of a railroad romance. Population: 62." "Make yourself home in Rossie. We have more than one horse. Population: 58."

"This is unbelievable!" he thought. In his skepticism, he logged into the Google site and typed "아이오와 블랙리스트. He clicked on the first Website that came up. He scrolled through the entries.

"Just as I suspected!" he said to himself. There wasn't a single Korean bar in Dolliver. Valerie had just one general store, operated by a babo who didn't know a word of Korean. You had to make your own kimchi in Rossie, because the grocer there never even heard of kimchi.

Our traveller closed his laptop, picked up his luggage, and walked toward the nearest ticket counter. He broke loose from one or two people who grabbed him and said, "도와줄까요?"

The woman at the ticket counter smiled nervously. "아! 한국인입니다! She quickly held up one finger and said, "잠깐만야!

Our flustered pilgrim said, "That's quite all right. You see . . ." But before he could finish his sentence, another nervous smiling woman came out and greeted him in Korean.

"I would like to catch the next plane to Iowa," he said.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
just another day



Joined: 12 Jul 2007
Location: Living with the Alaskan Inuits!!

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tomato wrote:

That's not quite the right analogy.
It wouldn't surprised to see two Koreans speaking Korean in my country.
I would love, however, to see Koreans get a dose of their own medicine.
Please see my following post.


its not?

but i've seen korean americans in america who can barely speak korean! your korean is probably better than theirs.

have you ever met a westerner in korea who couldn't speak english? like zero?

also, im not sure if a korean living in america will be that pissed off if everyone spoke to them in korean. i mean, i would imagine a lot would be happy, the unemployment rate among youth in Korea is very very high, and they would love to make money teaching korean...

i know what you are saying though. perhaps you should write a letter to the korea times, explaining how you want more koreans to speak to you in korean, rather than english. it seems that you are very passionate about this viewpoint, so perhaps you should write a letter to the korea times, in korean. i have a feeling it will definitely be seriously considered for publication.

perhaps you shouldn't be so angry in your letters. Just suggest that you wish that Koreans would rather speak to you and say "한국말 할수있어요?" as an introduction or something.

believe it or not, a lot of kyopos get surprise when native koreans find out kyopos can speak korean. or that kyopos know how to eat korean food. Laughing Its not that big of a deal, just part of the package. though i imagine for your perspective it is magnified.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
pest2



Joined: 01 Jun 2005
Location: Vancouver, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mysterious700 wrote:

ㄱ=g (k at the end of a sylable)
ㄷ=d
ㅂ=b (p at the end of a sylable)
ㄴ=n
ㄹ=l
ㅁ=m
ㅎ=h
ㅍ=p
ㅊ=ch
ㅌ=t
ㅋ=k
ㅅ=s (sometime sh)
ㅇ=ng (silent at the start of a sylable grouping)
ㅋ=k
Vowels:::
ㅛ=yo
ㅕ=aw
ㅑ=ya
ㅗ=o
ㅓ=u
ㅏ=a
ㅣ=ee
ㅠ=you
ㅜ=oo
ㅡ=e
.


Great, and sure its possible to do this.. but I un-downloaded the Korean case-set from computer last month because it wastes memory and because I'm leaving Korea soon and probably never going to use hangeul again...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
pest2



Joined: 01 Jun 2005
Location: Vancouver, Canada

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

samd wrote:


Tomato, you seem to be a dedicated Korean learner, so at least we have one thing in common, but that's about it.

Speaking of empathy, where's yours for the "Anglophone Koreans" that you can't stand to look at? They want to practise with you, for the same reasons that you want to practise with them. Ever heard of language exchange? Try it one day. For someone who hates being looked down upon, you sure do a lot of it.

Have you ever considered that maybe your problems finding Koreans who want to talk to you stem from you rather than from them? Judging by your posts in this thread, if I was a Korean I doubt I'd want to spend much time around you either. No wonder you end up speaking to children in the library. Then again, maybe I'm wrong and you're a very nice person to have a chat with. If so, I apologise.

I disagree that it is difficult to find Koreans to talk to. The fact that there is a large number of Koreans who I wish I could communicate better with inspires me to study harder.


Yeah, I dont think its hard to find Koreans to talk to. When I was into learning it a ilttle more than I am now, I could just start talking to a Family Mart clerk or the mother of some kid on a bus who probably wanted me to teach her kid English so she was friendly.. I got good enough to understand a little bit of the various conversations going on around me in public places and at work... then it got annoying and my view of Korea as a simple-minded, shallow, quality-less place increased...
But back to the topic at hand, I think Tomato's social-strategic view of trying one-up the Koreans he meets so he can use them before they use him fits in perfectly with the standard for quid pro quo relationships in Korea/sociopathic behavior anywhere else. What do Koreans who want to learn English think about native speakers? Theyre things they can use to learn English. What does Tomato think about Koreans? They're things he can use to learn Korean. I think Tomato is simply following the rule of, "when in rome..." -- not because he has adjusted his own disposition but because his natural disposition is perfectly compatible with Korean standards.

Other than that, I mean, come one. We've seen this same thread pop up again and again. The horse is dead!

The basic arguments people keep making for not learning it are:

-We don't consider learning Korean a worth-while investment because we dont intend to stay here for long. before that, the assumption that we have a choice, not a duty to learn a language must exist. No one seems to be able to provide a good argument that we have a duty to learn a language. Tomato tried to say that not learning a language causes war Rolling Eyes but there is no real evidence for this. It might cause certain people to have bad opinions of others who dont speak the language of the country they're in and it might make life for the language-less people harder, but still we dont see any argument that removes choice and free will and replaces it with duty. All the apologists succeed in doing when they get on their bandwagon and prescribe that everyone should learn Korean is to end up sounding like a bunch of arrogant pr1cks.


-We have difficulty finding people to practice with. (I personally disagree but you can't use your own limited experiences to make assumptions for the whole situation.)

-Korean is not an easy language to learn. Again, its hard to argue conclusively either way. How can you rate the difficulty of a language? Well, for English speakers, the syntax of Korean is totally different and there are some word 'types' that absolutely dont even exist in English. It's a timed language and native speakers have difficulty understanding it when even the slightest variation is or error is made... Its not hard to learn to write, however; the alphabet is easier than the English alphabet. On the other hand, compared to Spanish or German, which use romanized characters, the mere fact that you have to learn a different alphabet does make even reading and writing it harder than average.

-Related to the above, some people just aren't good at learning language. Bingo, a great argument. Absolutely irrefutable. The apologists get on here with their subjective experiences of success in learning Korean and talk down to everyone who didnt learn as if everyone in the world had exactly the same aptitude. In fact, we've all been through University (well, maybe, hehe) and we know that some people just dont have a knack for some things... Some people couldn't sit through an entire bio-chemistry class. Some people couldnt sit through an English lit class... Take that fact and apply its cause to trying to learn a language in a foreign country. Some people -- still intelligent -- just cant do it. People are different! That's what makes us people. Still, almost anyone (but maybe not? I might be wrong here) can learn the alphabet and to say a few common phrases....

-Korea is an annoying country and this situation provides no motivation to learn Korean. Sure, because as any language teacher will tell you, motivation is 1/2 of the ingredients to learning a language. If you dont want to learn a language, you wont. You have to find a way to want to learn in order to learn.

-Koreans spend years studying English and most speak enough to communicate with you to conduct basic tasks... well, this one is more refutable. Koreans seem to learn English formally but we all have been in situations where we cant get what we want using English. BUT, if we can read hangeul and know a few basic phrases, its almost always OK. So people say,

-Just learning enough Korean to survive -- ie the alphabet and basic few phrases -- is a sufficient choice for a rational, free-willed person to make. This is probably the best argument because no one could refute that we have a choice and not a duty to learn, here on Dave's forum.
And coupled with the fact that alot of people can't learn it conversationally because of aptitude problems and we need a motivation to learn -- motivation here without question being that we need it to survive -- it makes a pretty strong argument for the ONLY claim we can safely make from all this non-sensical talk about learning Korean in Korea:

"As a free-willed person, the minimum of acceptance for a rational choice about the degree to which to learn a language should be to learn it at least enough to survive." This isnt saying you have a duty to learn it... its like making a 100% prediction about people who are rational. If they are rational and they live in Korea, they will learn just enough Korean to survive. But not necessarily more.



In Korea, this just means learning how to order food, pay bills, take taxis, etc etc, I think...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Atavistic



Joined: 22 May 2006
Location: How totally stupid that Korean doesn't show in this area.

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 5:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

samd wrote:
Are you going to start a thread like this once a month Ghost?


Seriously, click view your own posts and just reopen the same thread you already started!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Atavistic



Joined: 22 May 2006
Location: How totally stupid that Korean doesn't show in this area.

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CheeseSandwich wrote:
I think you almost need to have a long term Korean girlfreind/Boyfreind. I haven't met any westerner fluent in Korean that didn't learn becuase they dated a korean for a few years.


I agree. Problem is that usually the language you have your first date in is the language the relationship will be conducted in (so I've read, no, don't have the source, I'm cushioning this with "usually" so give me a break) which means if you really want to practice Korean, you've got to speak enough to start a relationship in Korean which means...

Vicious circle!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
tomato



Joined: 31 Jan 2003
Location: I get so little foreign language experience, I must be in Koreatown, Los Angeles.

PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2007 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pest2 wrote:
Yeah, I dont think its hard to find Koreans to talk to.


You brought up the subject of differences in aptitude.
Maybe your social aptitude is greater than mine.

Quote:
When I was into learning it a little more than I am now, I could just start talking to a Family Mart clerk . . .


I've thought of that, but I don't want to bother people while they're at work.

Quote:
. . . or the mother of some kid on a bus who probably wanted me to teach her kid English so she was friendly..


Usually when a person is looking for an English tutor, that person speaks to me in English.
Five seconds of that sort of thing is about all I can stand.

Quote:
But back to the topic at hand, I think Tomato's social-strategic view of trying one-up the Koreans he meets so he can use them before they use him fits in perfectly with the standard for quid pro quo relationships in Korea/sociopathic behavior anywhere else.


Why is it degrading to Koreans to speak Korean to Koreans in Korea?
I never heard of such a thing until I came to Korea.
In my own country, I never heard anyone say that foreigners were degrading us by speaking English to us.
In Spanish America, I never heard anyone say that it was degrading to speak Spanish to Spanish Americans in Spanish America.

I am quite generous to those few Koreans who accredit me with anything besides knowledge of English.
I have skills in music.
I am capable of helping Korean music students, and I have.
I know a little bit of American sign language.
My Korean sign language teacher asked me to teach her American sign language, and I gladly complied.
I don't know much Japanese, but I have managed to teach the children in the library a little bit of Japanese in the little time which I have spent there.

On the other hand, when a Korean grabs me on the street, insists on speaking to me in English no matter how many times I answer him in English, and furthermore refuses to discuss anything deeper than how-do-you-like-the-weather, that person is degrading me.
Maybe in pulp fiction, heroes are brave and nothing else, villains are evil and nothing else, women are frail and nothing else, and scientists are brainy and nothing else.
But this is the real world, where each individual has not one but many attributes.

I don't accredit Koreans one and only one trait, Koreans should not accredit me with one and only one trait.
I'd like to discuss with Koreans something besides do-you-like-kimchi, but I can't even do that over the Internet.
The Korean people are so sure that we have nothing to say, they won't even let us log into discussion groups with our alien registration numbers.

Quote:
some people just aren't good at learning language.


I took a foreign language aptitude test in whcih I scored in the 99th percentile.
If that test is valid, I deeply pity the other 99%.

Quote:
The apologists get on here with their subjective experiences of success in learning Korean and talk down to everyone who didnt learn as if everyone in the world had exactly the same aptitude.


I hear what you're saying, but most foreigners don't even try.
What are most of the threads on this forum about?
Korean grammar? Korean idioms? Korean verb tenses?
Heck no! Western movies, Western pop songs, and Western sports!
When the conversation IS about Korea, it is usually something like electric fan death and Korea-has-four-seasons.

Quote:
Koreans spend years studying English and most speak enough to communicate with you to conduct basic tasks.


Yes, I know their English is better than my Korean.
That doesn't entitle them to rub it in.

They may have an earlier start over me, but that's not my fault.
When I was a little kid, I desperately wanted foreign language instruction, but I never got it.
I want to catch up with all these lucky people who have had years of foreign language training, and I think I have a right to try.
But the only way I can do that is to stay away from all these first-language pushers who are trying to get me hooked.

Quote:
Just learning enough Korean to survive -- ie the alphabet and basic few phrases -- is a sufficient choice for a rational, free-willed person to make.


Then the rational, free-willed person will not learn much about Korea.
Surely to goodness there is more in Korea than where-is-the-restroom and where-is-the-bus-station.


Last edited by tomato on Fri Aug 03, 2007 10:40 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Korean Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> General Discussion Forum All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Goto page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next
Page 4 of 5

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page is maintained by the one and only Dave Sperling.
Contact Dave's ESL Cafe
Copyright © 2018 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group

TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International