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Korean Language in Culture and Society


Admission requirements

A beginning level of proficiency in Korean is crucial and some background knowledge of Korea is useful.


This course investigates the intimate connection between language, culture and society in Korean contexts. It covers selected key concepts of sociolinguistics: hierarchy, solidarity, power and gender, next to the basic linguistic features in Korean language. This course provides students with a general overview and understanding of how native speakers’ cultural values and related activities are formulated and expressed through language and how the social relationships with others are practiced through language.

Course objectives

Objectives of this course are:

  • To develop an in-depth understanding of Korean culture and society in the analysis of spoken and written Korean discourse.

  • To critically engage with research finding in the field and present opinions and arguments in written and oral form.

  • To acquire and ability to use theoretical and analytical tools to discuss the socio-cultural nature of Korean.



Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

Course Load

  • Total workload 140 hours;

  • Contact hours: 2 hours per week X 13 weeks = 26 hours

  • Preparation: 4 hours per week X 13 weeks = 52 hours

  • Preparing oral presentation= 12 hours

  • Written assignments (review and research): 50 hours

Assessment method

  • Participation (attendance, participation, preparation): 20%

  • Presentation: 20%

  • Critical literature review: 20%

  • Research paper: 40%

Resit: students who fail the course (a grade below a 5.5) may resit the research paper if they have participated in the presentation and critical literature review.


Blackboard will be used for delivery of relevant reading materials and submission of assignments.

Reading list

  • Background text: Ho-min Sohn. 2006. Korean language in culture and society. USA: University of Hawai’i Press.

  • Other reading material: see Blackboard.


Students are required to register for this course via uSis, the course registration system of Leiden University. General information about the Registration procedure


Mw. Dr. J.H. Park, Room 127 in the Arsenaal.


Compulsory attendance.
Co-ordinator of Studies Mw. S. Kraakman