Such a wild thing to observe: SKorea has developed so rapidly that our language has become riddled with foreign loanwords that our Northern counterpart can no longer understand – even if we speak the same language.
Excited to see technology being used as a powerful medium to better bridge the growing 70-year gap of our now two distinct cultures.
Narrator: “27,000 North Korean defectors living in South Korea.”
[Students introduce themselves in Korean]
Narrator: “What is it called?”
[Students name objects in Korean]
Narrator: “Through 70 years of separation, languages of the two Koreas have grown apart. Would you mark any unfamiliar words? North Korean defector students could understand less than 50% of the terms in the textbooks. This led to them being neglected from regular education, and that led to disparity in employment and income. Even Google Translator could not solve the discrepancies in the language. So then we came to create our own translator. South Korean-North Korean translator. We designed it so that a simple scan of an unfamiliar South Korean word with a smartphone would translate it into North Korean. Translating several words all at once is also possible. It was hoped that with this app, the North Korean defectors would be able to get proper education. We of course plan to continue to help them adjust well to life in South Korea. Koreans were shocked, saddened, but motivated after seeing the translator for what had been the same language.”
[Dr. Huttman speaking German]
Narrator: “Nobody knows when the two Koreas will be reunified, but if the two Koreas are able to communicate without barriers through this translator, perhaps that day would come just a little sooner.”
Yaaasss! So important to continue working toward reunification
Dream Touch Creator
South Korean-North Korean translator
South Korea (2015)
On August 10, 1945 two young officers – Dean Rusk and Charles Bonesteel – were assigned to define an American occupation zone. Working on extremely short notice and completely unprepared, they used a National Geographic map to decide on the 38th parallel. They chose it because it divided the country approximately in half but would leave the capital Seoul under American control. No experts on Korea were consulted.
There really is too, too much to say about the crazy consequences of the Korean War and the division of the peninsula, and how both North Korea and South Korea have had unexpected interactions with different cultures within and beyond themselves since then.
But I thought I’d end this themed week on a positive note. Back to our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow!