Tuesday, December 2, 2014

[Final Spectacular] South Korea(n), misconceptions and truths.

[Final Spectacular]

image from Evan and Rachel's Youtube clip.

Welcome :+:..:+:..December..:+:..:+:!
I just noticed there are only 3 more weeks left to the winter vacation. (2 more weeks to final exams :0) And I'm happy to prepare this final spectacular through out this blog. I'm sure it's been an amazing journey and I'm more than excited we're about to have a final 'spectacular', not final 'exam' ! yay :D

So, for my final spectacular, I want to talk about 'South Korea(n), misconceptions and truths'. I'm sure you guys have heard "Oh Korea(n) ! You must be~~, or, It must be~~~ " at least once from foreigners. Yes I want to talk about that kind of misconceptions (it might be turn out as truths, though.) and hear some thoughts from you guys.

will be like below.

  • Short introduction of myself
  • Own opinions and stories about Korea(n).
  • Answering to few interesting misconceptions about Korea.
  • Sharing our stories and solving misconceptions about Korea(n).

So !
This Grace Lee, I'm South Korean. I'm a student of Busan University of Foreign Studies, majoring Japanese and English. Obviously, I'm interested in languages and different cultures, so, that's why I chose this topic to talk about for this final spectacular.

As a student who's majoring languages, I've had many chances to meet foreigners, have opportunity to be friends with them and visit their countries. So I've been receiving many questions about Korea and Korean and I want to tell you about my 'own' ; personal opinions and stories to that questions.

1. "Grace.. do you really 'eat' dog meat?!"
Oh my goodness, no ! I've never eaten. No one will invite you for dinner and serve you a 'dog meat'. I know There are some records of people eating it thousands of years ago in Korea, when the country was extremely impoverished. And there are still few people, usually older gentlemen, eat a stew ; called 'boshintang' made out of dog meat to enhance stamina and virility. But it's rear. I've never met young girls and boys who like to eat dog meat. They will be disgusted if they were asked that they eat dog meat.

2. "You know, Koreans get along mostly with Koreans.."
Why is that..? I've received this questions quite a lot. I don't know why but I think we do. Of course I like to hang out with foreigners and I'm sure Koreans who are living in foreign countries would love to make foreign friends. But it's true I feel more comfortable when I'm with Koreans because we can understand each others better. And regardless of nationality, wouldn't it be more relaxing to get along with people who are from same country with ourselves? But still 'yes', I can easily find out Koreans get along with Koreans in other countries and I feel we tent to hang out with ourselves compare to other nationality.

3. "Korean girls are beautiful! Well.. you guys get plastic surgeries a lot, right?"
To be honest, I think it's highly considered to get a plastic surgery in Korea. I saw one survey conducted by online job portal career, found that 30 percent of male and female university students in Korea plan to get some kind of plastic surgery during their summer vacation. Because the unemployment problem is serious in Korea so undergraduate students try hard to get better qualifications for job-searching. And nice looking definitely has become important as one of the qualifications at the moment.


Wow.. No.1 it is, Korea.
Yes I think we can't deny there are many people got plastic surgery. But that doesn't mean that most of Korean girls just do it for their beauty but it's still not an easy thing to decide to us(Korean girls) and obviously most of Korean girls haven't gotten one.

Questions above were I was usually asked from foreigners about Korea and Korean. I want to hear some opinions to those questions from you guys so I'll look forward to having you in my Hangout show ! :)

And next, I want to introduce some interesting misconceptions about Korea(n) and answer it. FYI, answers are going to be my personal opinions but I did ask my friends for their ideas so I'm sure it's quite universal as well.

1. Korea is underdeveloped country?
I think this misconception is made because people don't have an idea what Korea is like inside. When Korean is on a foreign TV shows, no offense, I can find out that TV shows want Korean(or Asian) as a poor, pathetic character who just rescued from a war or an underdeveloped country.  Actually it is true, short time ago, Korea was very underdeveloped. But it's industrialized, modernized and developed very rapidly so in these days, you can find modern cities, architecture and every modern convenience anywhere in Europe and America is in Korea. And the UN rates South Korea as the 15th best country to live in 2013's UNDP Human Development Index - higher than Japan's 17th ranking.
I want to show you guys one video about capital city of Korea, Seoul. And you'll see it's now quite developed and modernized. :)

2. It is such a dangerous country to live?
I understand people might think Korea is dangerous country to live because we're technically at war since North and South Korea never signed the peace treaty. But since 1953, there hasn't been a war and it's been the ceasefire. I've never felt it's dangerous to live in Korea, but rather I felt Korea is quite safe country from natural disaster likewise earthquakes, hailstones, floods. Of course we can't say it's 100% safe from war since we're at the ceasefire, but after that, there were only few small clashes.
3. We’re all big fans of K-POP?
I can easily find out people who don't watch Korean TV shows, don't listen to K-pop songs, I mean, who nearly hate K-pop things. I know K-pop is what everyone sees because our media highly promotes them. In my case, I'm one of them actually. I don't like Korean idols, boy bands, girl singers(we call them 'idol-girl-group') who shake their bodies doing lip-sync. So, obviously, not every Koreans are big fans of K-POP. There are so many artists who have really great songs and voices. But Korean entertainment management companies keep making boy,girl bands who have good looking because they want to make big money. (Asian market to K-pop is enormous.) I hope real good musicians in Korea will be more supported so that K-pop can be more various and colorful.

There are still many misconceptions about Korea and Korean behaviors.

(Again, it can be turned out truth.)
I want to talk about more on a our Hangout show which is coming on next Monday ; 8th, December !

So, Questions I mentioned above were,

  • Do Koreans really eat dog meat?
  • Do Koreans tent to get along mostly with Koreans?
  • Do Koreans get plastic surgery a lot?
  • Is Korea underdeveloped country?
  • Is Korea dangerous to live?
  • Are we all big fans of K-pop?

I'll be studying and researching more about this topic and will upload few extra interesting questions we can discuss about.

I hope I can hear some opinions from you. Please share your stories and thoughts about 'Misconceptions about Korea'. I'll be looking forward to it :)

See you !

reference datas from: http://listverse.com/2011/12/20/top-10-misconceptions-about-south-korea/

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