## The English you can speak, Oct 1 2009

Korean society still has a rigid age hierarchy deeply rooted in its Confucian past.In fact, the Korean word for "friend", "친구" by definition applies exclusively to people who are the same age as you. For those older than you, you must choose an appropriate honorific to indicate that relationship. Guys must refer to an older male as "형" and an older female as "누나". If you are a girl, the proper terms are "언니" to indicate an older female and "오빠" for an older male. These terms are used within a family to mark the relationships between siblings as well. That same pecking order also applies to students who go to school together. Koreans place a lot of weight on the "senior-junior" relationship. Not showing the proper level of respect to a senior is considered a big social faux pas.

# Laws, rules, or systems that are rigid cannot be changed or varied, and are therefore considered to be rather severe.
# An honorific title or way of talking is used to show respect or honour to someone.
# The pecking order of a group is the way that the positions people have are arranged.
# A faux pas is a socially embarrassing action or mistake

## It's an "age" custom for Korean to live with rigid age hierarchy. The "senior-junior" relationship is also very important in the Korean society and university life. So we have to use honorifics when we meet a person for the first time. As we start to be familiar with each other, then we ask naturally "how old are you?" to select appropriate honorific. When I was young, I was confused which honorific I should say to my siblings. The guy is always happy whenever they are heard "오빠". Some girl call the guy "오빠", it means girl who is younger then guy wants to talk with him. It's so cute for girl to say it.

# How important a factor does age play in your life?
# Do you think the emphasis on age is good or bad?
# Talk about some customs we have related to age.
# Talk about honorifics in the Korean language which have to do with age.

===== Thanks! Mike-!
## It's an age old custom for Koreans to live with a rigid age hierarchy. The "junior-senior" relationship is also very important in Korean society and university life. So we have to use honorific salutations when we meet people for the first time. As we start to be familiar with each other, then we ask naturally "how old are you?" in order to select appropriate salutations. When I was young, I was confused which salutations I should say to my siblings. Guys are always happy whenever they hear "오빠". Korean girls call guys "오빠", it means a girl who is younger than a guy wants to talk with him. It's so cute for a girl to say it.
Posted by 아침형라이더