24 In Korean learning journey (:

The craze of learning Korean

Everyone seems to be learning Korean these days. Or at least picking up some phrases. And almost everyone I’ve talked to has seen the oppan gangnam style video. Kpop is playing everywhere in Singapore, there are always people talking about kpop and kdramas. Kinokuniya’s Korean textbook section is expanding and there seems to be more Korean classes everywhere.

So why isn’t my blog getting more popular? D: (kidding)

I need to work harder in case more people are getting better than me. Stay at the top of the game 😛 hahaha. It will be quite sad that I lost my advantage in the only skill I’m proud of. xD

That being said, people have sometimes asked me how I feel about the fact that there are so many people learning Korean these days. Great. And not so great.

Great. I get a bit lesser of the ‘huhhh?? LEARN KOREAN SO RUBBISH’, and more of the ‘wow!! I am just starting to learn too!’.

But I’m seeing a lot of people spending hundreds and hundreds on Korean textbooks – which are terribly expensive and most of them not so decent. The other day I saw a girl buying those expensive Korean-English dictionaries, a few phrasebooks, a few vocabulary books etc. Besides doubting the quality of the books, I can’t help but doubt how long they will use it for. I’m not trying to be skeptical or anything. This comes from first hand experience. *stares at the abandoned Spanish phrasebooks/dictionary on the bookshelf*

I wonder how long will the hype last.

I used to be one of those that know all the latest news ongoing in the kpop world.

I’m now just one of those uninformed and out of the loop people who is firmly stuck in her era of big bang, 2ne1, davichi etc. The newest group whose group name I know? NU’EST. Did I even get that right? ><

Do you think the hype will last? How is it in your country? 😀

p.s. More Korean posts coming out soon. I have received feedback that I’m blogging too much Japanese and nothing very interesting hahahahaha.

I just typed this out while eating dinner in front of the comp. o.O

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24 Comments

  • Reply
    Margo Kuntsevich
    9 August, 2012 at 8:29 PM

    I think the Korean wave would last for about as much as Japanese one did. xD

    • Reply
      hangukdrama
      9 August, 2012 at 8:44 PM

      mm which means that there will be a lot of super good Korean speakers xD Time to study harder.

    • Reply
      J
      10 August, 2012 at 7:11 AM

      Agreed! But I do know of some people who are learning for personal enrichment, not because of the kpop craze. Personally,I started learning because I needed to do something other than my job. As I learn, I realised that Korean is a pretty interesting language. Something different from English in terms of sentence structure and nuances.

  • Reply
    Xing Wei
    9 August, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    😮 Are you talking about me?

  • Reply
    Katharine (수정)
    9 August, 2012 at 8:52 PM

    I have the same opinion as you have on this Shanna 🙂 It’s both a good and not-so-good thing ^^ I’m in Vietnam right now and I must say, sometimes I feel like I’m in Korea when passing by some streets. Korean stores and restaurants are very popular here

    • Reply
      hangukdrama
      9 August, 2012 at 9:05 PM

      hahaha at least you get to hear some Korean stuff xD Are the restaurants authentic?

      • Reply
        Katharine (수정)
        10 August, 2012 at 10:51 AM

        many are owned by Koreans. There are actually a lot of Korean people here, there’s a place with a street of Korean — food, stuff, people, etc. 😀 I’m still trying to look for Korean bookshops though. can’t find one so far. i think i’d be shipping most of the books i want. haha.

  • Reply
    Jeannie
    9 August, 2012 at 9:03 PM

    I only had three books when I started learning which was yearrrrrssss ago and I felt that I needed more because I wanted to learn fast. I bought a bunch of books when I got here and I can’t even count them now and I sort of regret buying some of them because they’re not as useful as I thought. Lesson learned!! Before I buy books I ask people first about it or read reviews online.
    I kinda like that a lot of people are now interested in learning Korean. Knowing how to speak a language is good but some people seem to be quite confused about knowing korean or another language.

    • Reply
      hangukdrama
      9 August, 2012 at 9:06 PM

      yeah but I think book shopping comes with experience too. Now I know which are the good ones even without really looking at it in detail. 😀

    • Reply
      Anonymous
      9 August, 2012 at 9:07 PM

      Errr i accidentally pressed post..I mean there’s a lot of people who say that they know korean but they can’t even speak or write properly. Knowing korean is not just ‘oppa saranghae’ it’s more deeper than that.

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    9 August, 2012 at 10:16 PM

    can’t help but say I’m also part of the crowd here haha! in fact I think one of the reasons I’m not getting much progress other than work is that I’m juggling learning between two languages (Japanese and Korean)! If only we could all use it or better yet, learn it through work that would be really nice!

    • Reply
      Anonymous
      15 August, 2012 at 7:06 PM

      나도…. ㅋㅋㅋㅋ

  • Reply
    Archana
    10 August, 2012 at 12:44 AM

    I still get the “WHOA KOREAN? THAT’S SO COOL” reaction here in the U.S. but I certainly feel the Korean-learning craze online. K-pop is slowly and steadily getting on my nerves so it annoys me that loads of people are starting to learn it just for that reason but to each their own. I hope that most of the newer learners will learn to appreciate the language for what it is!

    I seriously think buying grammar books is a waste of money. I own three super cheap Korean textbooks and 2 Japanese books, but most of the grammar I learned was through TTMIK and the internet. The internet is such a great (FREE) source but you have to put in the time to do your own research. But I do think novels and nonfiction books are worth investing in. I’ve learned tons more from them and it’s always nice to go back to a novel you started a couple months ago and realize “Hey, I actually understand more now than I used to!” You can really feel your progress.

    • Reply
      hangukdrama
      10 August, 2012 at 9:35 AM

      haha we always think the same way 😀 I tuned out all kpop except those by the familiar artistes. I think I’ll go back to my first novel one of these days. All the fond memories. big bang’s 세상에 너를 소리쳐!!

      • Reply
        Archana
        11 August, 2012 at 7:42 AM

        Haha I bought that book on your recommendation!

  • Reply
    Eddie
    10 August, 2012 at 4:16 AM

    In my own extended social circles people are no more interested in Korean language or culture, but they do like Gangnam Style. It’s just another “cool” thing like KBBQ and professional Starcraft. So far I have spent $0 on Korean learning materials, and I’ve done okay. It’s mostly a matter of when I want to give TTMIK all my money 😉

    • Reply
      hangukdrama
      10 August, 2012 at 9:33 AM

      hahaha!! I’m sure the TTMIK team will be happy to hear that 😛

  • Reply
    에텔~♡ (@ethel1187)
    10 August, 2012 at 10:31 AM

    lol we are stuck in the same era ><

  • Reply
    JK
    11 August, 2012 at 1:03 AM

    I know it’s the craze now, but i can’t help feeling annoyed when ppl blurts out random korean vocab.. (especially when they pronounce it wrongly). many ppl has started learning korean too, but I wonder how long can they sustain..

    I’m so gonna miss Korean bookstores after i go back to SG..
    Now having a hard time packing luggage due to too many books bought ㅠㅠ
    But I’m getting away from the korean-textbook-craze-stage though… looking more for 청소년 소설 nowadays.. trying to explore the korean literature world. ㅋㅋ
    Managed to subscribe to 좋은생각 too, gonna provide me my monthly dosage of korean-language-vitamin.. ㅎㅎㅎㅎ

  • Reply
    Courtney
    11 August, 2012 at 8:46 AM

    We’ve never had much of a Korean language learning craze in the U.S. I feel like we went from a Japanese learning craze to a Mandarin learning craze. The Korean wave hasn’t had that much impact here because you can’t watch K-dramas on TV unless you pay for an extra satellite channel, or, in places like Los Angeles, special cable channels. You also never hear K-pop on a regular radio station. Because Korean has never gotten really popular, I wind up having to use the internet to order any books I want because most bookstore don’t carry any Korean books. I guess I wish Korean were more popular, but I don’t want crowds of people studying it because it’s the “in” thing.

  • Reply
    alodia
    5 November, 2012 at 1:43 AM

    What shall we call ourselves? First gen? ㅋㅋㅋㅋ
    I remember roughly 10 years ago no one ever signs up for Korean language elective but these past semesters the we can’t accommodate the number of students signing up for one. And about 5 years ago, very few applies for an exchange program to Korea and all were clamoring to go to on exchange to Japan prompting the exchange committee to lower the GPA requirement for Korea and actively encouraging students to apply to Korea. Now, even those who are majoring in Japanese language would opt for an exchange to Korea instead of Japan (grrr!!! haha. we hate them because they are learning Japanese, go to Japan! They are taking away the few slots for us, Korean lovers!). And even in the fangirling scene! I remember how difficult it was to find subtitles and translations for fangirl stuff but these days more and more non-Korean fans are getting better and better in Korean thus most Korean stuff are now translated, not just in English but to other languages too. We used to wait days/weeks for subs, but now just after a few hours of airing it’ll be out. Makes me wonder, if I’ve been a fan of Kim Sun Ah just now would I even consider learning Korean when everything is now practically spoon-fed (Thus I’m thankful I’ve been a fan when, if you are a foreigner, you are practically on your own and no one would translate stuff for you).

    Before when people learn I’m studying Korean their reaction would be “Ah, so you can get a job in Korea? I heard the pay is good!” (which annoys me!) but now it’s either “So who’s your favorite Kpop artist?” or “Do you have a Korean boyfriend?” (which is more annoying because I don’t have either).

    It’s actually great that more and more people are interested in Korean language now. You’ll also get to meet and gain friends. But honestly it also feels like a threat. A good one that is. I was like, “Oh no! They are learning Korean now too and they are improving really fast while I’m stuck here” ㅎㅎㅎ

    • Reply
      hangukdrama
      5 November, 2012 at 11:38 AM

      hehe i think i’m the 2nd gen! 😛

      yeah i totally agree with what you say!!! And sometimes *in a small voice* it sucks cos most of the people who apply to korea are more interested in just the sightseeing and kpop stars instead of really wanting an opportunity to learn korean and to really immerse in their culture. Not to say that it’s a bad thing to want to go sightsee or wad, but it’s sad when someone who really really really wanted to go can’t get the spot.

      ㅋㅋㅋ nowadays i simply reply ‘i learn because i like it. cannot is it??’ XD

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