“Why do you like Korean stuff?” That question is often said with a note of disdain and isn’t necessarily an easy one to answer. From childhood, I watched TV shows and movies from other countries, usually without the help of subtitles. In my teens, right after Video One or Request Video would end, I would flip to channel 18 to watch an Asian drama. It was usually a historical drama from China or Korea, depending on the day of the week. I didn’t know what was being said, but the stories were easy to follow, the acting was terrible and awesome at the same time and the costuming was peak.
Most (American) people I know don’t like watching subtitled thing media unless it’s from a European country. They give reasons I’ll never understand. I feel it’s a good way to learn culture and language. When I was around 15 years old, a friend from the mosque got a new sister-in-law. She came to America not knowing a lick of English. In the next few years, she was fluent in English AND Spanish. Why? As a Libyan in Southern California, people are quick to speak Spanish to her. As a hijabi in America, she needed to be able to confront the ignorant, “Speak English!” attacks. She watched telenovelas and day-time soaps. Granted, everything she said sounded like there was a plot twist coming up, but at least she could communicate. Continue reading