Skip to main content Accessibility help

‘King Sejong is crying’: Korean people's perceptions of growing English usage in Korea

  • Eun-Young (Julia) Kim


Korea is probably one of the few countries, if not the only one, that observes a holiday in honor of the national language's alphabet. Hangulnal, which falls on October 9, is the Korean Alphabet Day. Each year, the government hosts events to celebrate one of the most prized possessions of the country, Hangul – the writing system of the national language. Created by King Sejong and his Royal Academy Scholars in the 15th century, Hangul is recognized as one of ‘the world's most scientific writing systems ever created by man’ (Sohn, 2001: 13). To outsiders, such pride may appear somewhat overblown, but Koreans do take great pride in Hangul.


Corresponding author


Hide All
Ahn, H. 2014. ‘Teachers’ attitudes towards Korean English in South Korea.’ World Englishes, 33(2), 195222.
Ahn, H. 2015. ‘Awareness of and attitudes to Asian Englishes: A study of English teachers in South Korea.’ Asian Englishes, 17(2), 132–51.
Ahn, H. 2017. Attitudes to World Englishes: Implications for Teaching English in South Korea. New York: Routledge.
Birner, B. n.d. ‘Is English changing?’ Linguistic Society of America. Online at <> (Accessed February 15, 2020).
Bucholtz, M. 2000. ‘Language and youth culture.’ American Speech, 75(3), 280–83.
Graham, T. & Wright, S. 2014. ‘Discursive equality and everyday talk online: The impact of super participants.’ Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 19(3), 625–42.
Hagens, S. A. 2005. ‘Attitudes toward Konglish of South Korean teachers of English in the Province of Jeollanamdo.’ Master's thesis. Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada. Online at <> (Accessed June 12, 2019.
Kerswill, P. 1996. ‘Children, adolescents, and language change.’ Language Variation and Change, 8(2), 177202.
Kim, E. 2012. ‘Creative adoption: Trends in anglicized Korean words.’ English Today, 28(2), 1517.
Kim, E. 2016. ‘Anglicized Korean neologisms of the new millennium: An overview.’ English Today, 32(3), 5260.
McDonald, C. & McRae, S. 2010. ‘A pre-trial collection and investigation of what perceptions and attitudes of Konglish exist amongst foreign and Korean English language teachers in terms of English education in Korea.’ The Asian EFL Journal Quarterly, 12(1), 134–64.
McPhail, S. 2018. ‘South Korea's linguistic tangle: English vs. Korean vs. Konglish: A study of the relative status of Konglish and its parent languages in South Korea.’ English Today, 34(1), 4551.
Rüdiger, S. 2018. ‘Mixed feelings: Attitudes towards English loanwords and their use in South Korea.Open Linguistics, 4(1),184198.
Sohn, H.–M. 2001. The Korean Language. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Yonhap News. 2018. ‘King Sejong is crying: Local governments are responsible for the destruction of the Korean alphabet.’ Online at <> (Accessed October 14, 2018.

‘King Sejong is crying’: Korean people's perceptions of growing English usage in Korea

  • Eun-Young (Julia) Kim


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed.