One of the most confusing thing for me is the honorific aspect of Korean language. There are many unspoken rules that one will learn overtime but I thought just help others avoid the embarrassing mistakes or situations I find myself in. In this podcast, I chat with three of my friends about the Korean age importance and how it affects and is perceived by both foreigner and Korean alike.
We discuss things such as, how to greet someone you don’t know, how to avoid offending others, and making new friends. Koreans tend to be very forgiving to foreigners when it comes to making mistakes but it’s always better to be safe than sorry, I think.
Here are some questions they answer:
- Is it important to start off by saying your age in the introduction when you meet someone new? Like in a casual setting? Why or why not?
- How important is age in Korea and how does it affect you on a day to day basis?
- If you become close friends with someone older than you, is it okay to drop honorifics or should you always speak in honorifics?
- Is it uncommon for Koreans to have friends who are much older than them?
- How polite is too polite when you speak to someone who don’t know well or just met for the first time?
- Do you have to use the honorifics Oppa (오빠) Eunni (언니) when you speak to someone who is older if you aren’t comfortable with it?