Tuesday, September 17, 2013

About: Hangul (한글)

     I started this blog because I would ofter hear/have conversations that went a bit like this.

Foreigner 1: There's nothing to do in Daegu! I wish I was working is Seoul or Busan.
Me: There's tons of awesome things to do in Daegu! Have you been to (cool place)?
Foreigner 1: No, I don't like that. I want to to do (something else).
Me: Well why don't you go to (other cool place)
Foreigner 1: Where is that?
Me: (Gives directions involving some Korean names)
Foreigner 1: Ugh, I can't find anything in this city! There's no way I can get there! I can't understand!
Me: But you want to go to Seoul or Busan...
Foreigner 1: That's different! It's more English friendly there. I could get around no problem! Korean is hard!

     So I thought, "I'll make a blog that anyone can use to see just how awesome Daegu really is"! Well, I thought that the best way to do this was to include Romanization of Korean words to attempt to make the language more accessible to people who don't know it. I think that I was wrong though, I'm not going to ever be able to please the kinds of people from that conversation. Besides If you are going to be in Korea for more than a day and you really want to be able to enjoy yourself then you really need to learn Hangul.
     The Korean written language is super easy, and looks far more intimidating than it is. Koreans love loanwords as well, and a lot of times menus and signs will have English words on them, just written out in Korean, so learning Hangul can really make your life easier here in Korea. I'm not going to teach it to you though, there are far better sites out there that can do that much better than I could. I can however give you some links to those sites.

 http://www.ryanestrada.com/ebooks/Learn%20to%20Read%20Korean%20in%2015%20Minutes.pdf  : This is a cute comic that shows you just how easy Hangul really is. I don't recommend actually learning from it though. You should study at the next link.

http://www.koreanwikiproject.com/wiki/index.php?title=Hangeul_step_1  : This is really in depth and from the creators of TTMIK so you know that it's quality.

     Most of the foreigners in Korea that are from western countries are English teachers. This means that they have studied at a a university hard enough to earn at least a bachelor's degree. Hangul is much easier than that. You can learn it well enough to read at a slow pace in about four hours, so there really is no excuse not to know it. It could get you interested enough in Korean to pursue it as a second language as well, and it's also a good cultural experience.
     Anyway, there's my case for learning Hangul. I find the people who steadfastly refuse to learn Hangul probably aren't going to bother trying to use my Romanizations or information on my blog anyways, which is why from this point on you won't see anymore Romanization in my posts (exceptions will be made for proper nouns and loanwords of course). So learn some Hangul and then get out there and explore Korea, you won't regret it!

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