Sunday, April 10, 2011

where did we come from? Why are you wining about it?

I have been intrigued by the word Korea for the past week or so. Several months ago I saw a tag that said Made In Corea. I thought it was funny and eventually got around to asking some students about it. Many products have Roman spellings and words on them, and I see many Made in Korea stickers. A girl called Clara explained that it was another hold over form Japanese colonial-ization. (1897-1945) I am going to read up more on this period in history, but for now I will just say that the kids are still affected by the ideas and feelings from this time. They freely talk about their disdain for the Japanese and there is still an issue over an island that is currently controlled by Korea that the Japanese also claim to be their own. The story goes that Japan wanted to change the name Corea to Korea so that the first letter of the word (C) wouldn't be ahead of the letter J for Japan in the alphabet. So I looked that up and only read one article because I was frustrated by it. No one is happy about this. Many are deciding to spell the word with a C. The comments pointed out that Corea / Korea is a western word, very true indeed. (modern Koreans call Korea Han Guk and I think in Japanese it's said Kankoku. Look at all those K's!) My problem is all the people who are mad about it and calling other people idiots. According to them, it has nothing to do with Japan, it has to do with the English language. Which may be 100% true. Yes, I am sympathetic to Korea because I live here, and I am also willing to accept, without a doubt, that this has nothing to do with Japan, but please stop calling people idiots because they believed the alphabet story. The comment that I found the most useful was the one from the linguistics student who explained a bit about the history of the Korean names. So please, help those of use out who are trying to understand, don't call people idiots because they don't.

And now onto something much nicer: I went to Costco today. I go about every other month and it's a pretty standard deal. Today I bought a lot and it was heavy and I decided to take a cab back because I didn't want to try to maneuver on the subway with all the stuff, and then onto to the bus where I probably wouldn't get a seat. It cost around $11.00, was fast, scenic, and I got to sit down the whole time. I usually take the bus and subway because it's cheap, but sometimes a cab is just awesome!


Brian said...

Isn't that spelled "Kostko"? Oh...well, I guess that it does not matter because either way it comes after the "Co-op"!

Natalie said...

they say cost-a-co. It took me a while to understand that and now I follow suit!