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The ’I Hate Korean’ Thread

 Language Learning Forum : Specific Languages Post Reply
131 messages over 17 pages: 1 24 5 6 7 ... 3 ... 16 17 Next >>
lichtrausch
Triglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 4065 days ago

525 posts - 1071 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, Japanese
Studies: Korean, Mandarin

 
 Message 17 of 131
01 July 2011 at 3:56pm | IP Logged 
Bao wrote:

Ung. That is, the problem isn't actually the word boundaries - French is just as difficult as Korean when it comes to that, but the way sounds change based on the surrounding sounds. As far as I can tell, the m has roughly the same sound value each time in 'Moi, je m'appelle Armand', whereas the Korean m changes a lot depending on whether it is between vowels, a vowel or a consonant, at the beginning or end of a word group; and whether it is spoken quickly or slowly. When it's spoken quickly or between vowels, it is so short that it gets a nasal quality that sounds very much like a b to me. I can tell apart and produce m, b, p' and bb, but to me that's a four way distinction of sounds that do not match the phoneme inventory of any of my other languages, neither in their boundaries nor in their interaction. And that's just one group of sounds, there are several.

In the short time I spent with the language, these sound changes were what really threw me off. All the other difficult things about the language I think I have seen in other languages.

ETA: spelling

Edited by lichtrausch on 01 July 2011 at 7:17pm

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galindo
Bilingual Triglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 3312 days ago

142 posts - 248 votes 
Speaks: English*, Spanish*, Japanese
Studies: Korean, Portuguese

 
 Message 18 of 131
01 July 2011 at 6:05pm | IP Logged 
This thread makes me think I need to get started on Korean RIGHT NOW, since it's obviously going to take me 20 years to be able to understand it. I've watched a few music videos in Korean with phonetic subtitles, and it's amazing how what I hear doesn't match up with what I see at all. I think I would definitely get frustrated trying to conquer those difficult sounds. But I know it would be worth it because of all the amazing television, movies, and books I would love to be able to understand.

I thought it would be better to put off Korean until I've perfected Japanese, but I guess I need to go take a look at those threads about beginning Korean!
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Yurk
Triglot
Newbie
United States
Joined 3835 days ago

29 posts - 37 votes
Speaks: English*, Russian, Azerbaijani
Studies: Modern Hebrew, Sign Language, Korean, Spanish, Indonesian, Irish
Studies: French

 
 Message 19 of 131
01 July 2011 at 7:29pm | IP Logged 
You're not alone, OP. I've only spent two years on it now, but I can definitely recognize the exact problems you're
experiencing it. I do believe though that maybe in at least a decade I'll be able to comprehend Korean as it's spoken.
It is a shame you seem to be giving up now though, I think you'd be able to reach that point in a few years too if
consistent.
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oolong tea
Newbie
United States
Joined 3318 days ago

5 posts - 6 votes
Studies: Korean

 
 Message 20 of 131
01 July 2011 at 8:38pm | IP Logged 

You think that's hell, consider this: I purchased a novel, Alice in Wonderland in Korean. Now, it was translated from the said original but whenever I glance at the original, I'm stunned to see how little I understood. Plus, it's a book about nonsense, when it does make "sense", it never did. (Think about it)
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GREGORG4000
Diglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 3628 days ago

307 posts - 479 votes 
Speaks: English*, Finnish
Studies: Japanese, Korean, Amharic, French

 
 Message 21 of 131
01 July 2011 at 9:20pm | IP Logged 
Vocabulary is killing me.

"강장", "건장", "정종", "공장", "전공", "간장", "조간", "존경", 등
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ScottScheule
Diglot
Senior Member
United States
scheule.blogspot.com
Joined 3333 days ago

645 posts - 1176 votes 
Speaks: English*, Spanish
Studies: Latin, Hungarian, Biblical Hebrew, Old English, Russian, Swedish, German, Italian, French

 
 Message 22 of 131
01 July 2011 at 9:47pm | IP Logged 
lichtrausch wrote:

In the short time I spent with the language, these sound changes were what really threw me off. All the other difficult things about the language I think I have seen in other languages.


Hmm. It doesn't sound that much more difficult than Spanish or German or French sandhi. E.g., for Spanish, "b" between vowels is an approximant, but after m n and at the beginning of utterance a full voiced stop, "d" is a fricative except when it comes after "n" "l" or at the beginning of an utterance. Or take the vowel reduction rules in Russian or English, the devoicing of certain word final stops, and assimilation of neighboring consonants.

LingQ seems to have added some Korean lately--why not try listening along with a transcript?

By the way, if anyone wants to see particularly nasty sandhi rules, check out the original offender, Sanskrit.
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vientito
Senior Member
Canada
Joined 4443 days ago

212 posts - 281 votes 

 
 Message 23 of 131
01 July 2011 at 9:56pm | IP Logged 
A lot of those korean words that you see do in fact have a lot of logics behind them.
A lot of them actually do have meaning in chinese. A while after I started korean, I
was amazed that lots of the words actually have very predictable construct relative to
my native cantonese (which inherits as well lots of traditional chinese characters).

For a person coming from a different background, this is totally alien to them.
Perhaps that is a critical point that I like to stress. Building vocabulary to you at
first would be a brute memorization process, until you reach a point where you cover
most everyday concepts. Then you will hit a wall because without knowledge of what the
underlying meaning and logics of these sounds you will be stuck forever at memorization
of the units, without the ability of creating meaningful units yourself.

Korean continues to absorb words, the same way they have been doing after chinese in
the past. There are lots of loanwords from English. They even take after a German
word for "moonlighting". Their cultural mindset is like the borgs in star trek they
will assimilate whatever that come across and claim them as their own.




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Sanghee
Groupie
United States
Joined 3173 days ago

60 posts - 98 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Mandarin, Korean

 
 Message 24 of 131
01 July 2011 at 11:13pm | IP Logged 
GREGORG4000 wrote:
Vocabulary is killing me.

"강장", "건장", "정종", "공장", "전공", "간장", "조간", "존경", 등

These two character words are sooo common and really are where a lot of my problems lie. I've only been studying for about 7 months but I'll frequently mix up two "slightly similar" 2 syllable words that I learn around the same time. Or, I'll flop sounds within words to say/type non-existent words. Examples of those are my difficulty in remembering 서점 versus 사전, or saying 경절 [either a non-existent word or an uncommon one, because I did manage to find a definition for it on naver] instead of 결정. However, I'm studying Hanja, I know about 90 now, and I think that will help a bit with some of these two syllable words.


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