Tue, 11 November 2014
In Seoul's Mapo-gu, Colin talks with Hyunwoo Sun, founder of the Korean language-learning site Talk to Me in Korean. They discuss whether a space alien with no knowledge of any human language should first study English or Korean; how he got into teaching his native language; how the strangeness of seeing foreigners speaking Korean has disappeared for him; the state of Korean English education, and how he managed not to get permanently put off language study by it despite the fact that "everything I learned about English was wrong"; how he corrected his own English by re-studying sounds first, going to Telnet for help, recording his own voice on audio cassette, and finding pen pals; the satisfaction of perceiving the lack of humor in Korean subtitles to English-language movies; why foreigners in Korea speak less Korean than foreigners in Japan speak Japanese or foreigners in China speak Chinese; how Koreans secretly all pay attention to any interaction between a foreigner and another Korean; what changes in his personality depending on the language he speaks, such as his Korean sentimentality or his English logic; the advantages he has realized his own language and culture has, such as the tight bonds that they form between individuals; why so many young people in Korea have the goal of going to Seoul; the luxurious dorm he got to stay in during high school by being one of the top hundred students; the battle that went on in Gwangju, his hometown, in 1980, the year he was born, and how it strengthened his family; the kind of confidence it took to start a language podcast; what he's learned about how foreigners learn Korean, and some strategies he recommends to any language-learners; why he has now spent most of his life in Seoul; the other cities in which he'd like to live his same lifestyle, but in other languages; how he plans to raise his baby son multilingual; and the coming generation of international Koreans who, like the buskers who have appeared over the past few years on the streets of Seoul, have the confidence to use their dormant language abilities.
Direct download: NCC_Korea_Tour_Hyunwoo_Sun.output.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:18pm UTC