Questions about Korean

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Chekhov
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Chekhov » 2011-07-27, 3:12

So have you looked at hangeul yet?
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Meera » 2011-07-27, 3:29

Yes it doesn't seem that scary, and I think it is very pretty. I think it's a little eaiser to write then Chinense. Korean sounds very pretty also. I seriously can't beleive i'm attempting to learn a East Asian languange :oops: But Korean seems so interesting to me :P
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Karavinka » 2011-07-27, 4:52

In fact, seven. One is obsolete except in historical dramas (the speech used to address royalty), and the other is almost obsolete (formal but impolite: used by seniors to address each other, each showing respect but familiarity.) So, for most learners, five is right. To make it easier, a foreigner (who looks foreign - e.g. not Chinese or Japanese) can get by using only one "informal polite" throughout at the beginning stages. Since Korean conjugates verbs according to the politesse and not according to number and person, this can actually make it somewhat easier to get started. (Though textbooks will try to show you some more politesse levels, which are still important to understand at least.)

The proper pragmatics of the language will pose more problems, though. Korean society is extremely hierarchical, and it is very common to identify the interlocutor whether he or she is one's social superior or inferior - and the "superiority" can be determined by age, seniority in school, positions at work, job titles, etc. Even one year difference in age/school grade makes the hierarchy.

For example, let's say I talk with Meera in Korean. At first, assuming we don't know each other or we aren't on a very familiar term, we'll use informal polite forms while addressing each other with the title -nim. (especially so since we know each other from online) After a while, we decide to drop the politesse a bit and use familiar language (like switching from vous to tu in French, or Sie to du in German)... and then, since Meera is a few years younger than me (according to her Unilang profile), she will continue using the informal polite while I can go straight informal impolite. I can call her by first name only, but she must throw in a title which literally means "elder brother" after my name (because Korean is postpositional).

That's damn fair, eh?

Being a native speaker that I am, I'm not very fond of this langauge and I actually try my best in my life to distance myself from the language. (I've read very few books in Korean in my past two years in this country, and I don't bother with any Korean media) I'm sorry for not sounding very supportive, but...well, that's how I feel about this abomination of language. It's often too restrictive. Even Japanese gives me more freedom.
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Meera » 2011-07-27, 5:18

Karavinka wrote:In fact, seven. One is obsolete except in historical dramas (the speech used to address royalty), and the other is almost obsolete (formal but impolite: used by seniors to address each other, each showing respect but familiarity.) So, for most learners, five is right. To make it easier, a foreigner (who looks foreign - e.g. not Chinese or Japanese) can get by using only one "informal polite" throughout at the beginning stages. Since Korean conjugates verbs according to the politesse and not according to number and person, this can actually make it somewhat easier to get started. (Though textbooks will try to show you some more politesse levels, which are still important to understand at least.)

The proper pragmatics of the language will pose more problems, though. Korean society is extremely hierarchical, and it is very common to identify the interlocutor whether he or she is one's social superior or inferior - and the "superiority" can be determined by age, seniority in school, positions at work, job titles, etc. Even one year difference in age/school grade makes the hierarchy.

For example, let's say I talk with Meera in Korean. At first, assuming we don't know each other or we aren't on a very familiar term, we'll use informal polite forms while addressing each other with the title -nim. (especially so since we know each other from online) After a while, we decide to drop the politesse a bit and use familiar language (like switching from vous to tu in French, or Sie to du in German)... and then, since Meera is a few years younger than me (according to her Unilang profile), she will continue using the informal polite while I can go straight informal impolite. I can call her by first name only, but she must throw in a title which literally means "elder brother" after my name (because Korean is postpositional).

That's damn fair, eh?

Being a native speaker that I am, I'm not very fond of this langauge and I actually try my best in my life to distance myself from the language. (I've read very few books in Korean in my past two years in this country, and I don't bother with any Korean media) I'm sorry for not sounding very supportive, but...well, that's how I feel about this abomination of language. It's often too restrictive. Even Japanese gives me more freedom.



Lol! Thanks for explaining. :D
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Chekhov » 2011-07-27, 5:28

But the rules can't be followed that strictly all the time, can they? What about in the younger general?
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Karavinka » 2011-07-27, 5:50

Chekhov wrote:But the rules can't be followed that strictly all the time, can they? What about in the younger general?


The social hierarchy is built into their brain already by the time the kids talk. The ranking begins at pre-kindergarten levels. This, I'm saying from my own experience. 3, 4, 5 year-olds may not have command over multiple registers yet, but still a 3 year-olds will show deference to a 4 years-old by addressing him/her as "elder brother/sister" instead of caling first name. Those who don't, well.... they get punished, whether by their parents or by their... "elder siblings".

All that said, I think Korean is a nice language to know, but not if I have to speak it everyday.
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Luna_Lovegood » 2011-07-29, 8:46

It's good that more people want to study Korean.
I think the grammar is similar to Turkish as it's agglutanative and the word structure is quite similar.

However Korean seems to add less suffixes, they don't lump together more than 4 in one word.
The number of suffixs is however quite big - it is said they have 600 of them

but the grammar in itself is not so hard, it's very regular, I think it's a little due to it's writing system.
however there are many rules to that writing.

I reccomend sogang Korean website - it's very well made, interactive exercises and stuff.
They explain all the rules of the alphabet - hangul in itself is very easy, much easier than I think not only Chinese, but also Latin, Devanagari etc, the shapes are easy to remember, and easy to write.
I have said that grammar is not hard in itself, as rules are easy to remember, but when to use which ending is not always so easy, not only polite styles, but also mood indicators etc.

I think if you like Turkish grammar you will like Korean one too.
I find it really enchantin
To say "if", you conjugate the verb.



The biggest problem I think could be the vocabulary, it used to writ using Chinese characters, so now with all written in Hangul there are many homophones.

Vocabulary is really rich, you say things in one word that you would write using two in other languages.

낙마하다 = to fall from a horse
i think Koreans use much more words in real life.

I have read once that English speakers use 3000 words in normal life, Japanese use 10 000.

I don't know date for the Korean language, but I suppose it's quite close the the Japanese number, as they use many words from Chinese, and build words from the morfemes in shape of Chinese characters.


But they say if you want to get basic, it's not so hard, it's rather going advanced in Korean hard.
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Meera » 2011-07-29, 16:06

Thank you very much, Luna. I have started the Korean alphabet and so far it is pretty logical and straight forward. and Yes Luna, for right now I only want to learn basic Korean, I just want to learn enough to help comunicate to some students in the ESL class I help out in. I really like how organized the script is and its very fun to write, although my handwritting looks really bad :oops:
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Re: Questions about Korean

Postby Luna_Lovegood » 2011-08-04, 16:47

Hm, I have forgot to add that Korean culture is very popular across the Asia!
Even in Arab speaking countries. Korea produces world popular dramas, and there is plenty of Korean on pen pal websites. I think they are very nice to people who try learning their language.

There is even a show with women speaking Korean on kbs.
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Using A1 (!) Japanese as a bridge to Korean

Postby langmon » 2018-11-10, 11:15

Now this might turn out to be a question "only SGP would ask" :D.
Still, how to use one's very basic spoken A1 (!) Japanese as a bridge for getting started with Korean and also advancing way beyond A1?
(Coming from someone who also intends to advance with Japanese some more as soon as it is possible in a hassle-free way :), but I am asking on the base of "what if I didn't continue learning Japanese now, can I still do that other thing?").
- Any two-digit no. of lang. learned in rotation
- Botany (EN, DE, ...)


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