The History and Culture of Korea

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Korea started its inhabitance around 700,000 years ago. From its roots, Korean culture took its form from contributing political decisions, a booming economy, and the military conflicts that not only affected Korea, but also the rest of the world. Even with all the external influences that South Korea has fought off, they still stand true to their Confucian ideals.
The Korean language has existed for more than 2,000 years. For hundreds of years, three different forms of Korean used slightly modified Chinese characters for writing. The Korean alphabet did not come about until the mid-15th century, when King Sejong the Great introduced the Hangul phonetic system. This alphabet, known as “The correct sounds for the instruction of the people,” initially intended to be a system common people could use to learn to read and write. The alphabet created as a way to instill cultural unity across the populace. The alphabet, which originally had only twenty-eight letters, was to allow anyone to learn correct pronunciation with just a few hours of study. Hangul, now spelled Hangeul, intended only for most informal writing and literature. A mix of Hangeul and Chinese characters, known as Hanja, is used in academic papers and official documents. The modern Korean alphabet contains fourteen basic consonants and ten basic vowels. There are six Korean dialects spoken in South Korea. The dialects are generally contained with specific provisional boundaries, and not all of them are easily understandable with others.
The impact of Confucian ideals on South Korean society extends to etiquette. According to these ideals, the manner in which a person greets one another depends on the person’s age and social standing in relation to the gr...

... middle of paper ... he would launch “a pre-emptive nuclear strike” against his country's enemies and said he had voided the 1953 armistice that ended the war between North and South Korea. Dismissed as bluster Kim's threats nevertheless were the most menacing in years by any leader. He continued his bellicose tone in March and shut down not only Red Cross hotlines between North and South Korea but also military hotlines (Infoplease).
In conclusion, South Korea’s culture has been defined by contributing political decisions, booming economy, and the military conflicts, which lead to their etiquette and religious practices. South Korea continues to be a traditional Confucian nation and it reflects in their etiquette and family traditions. South Korea will continue to have a thriving economy due to their telecommunications and electronic superiority over the rest of the world.
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