Korean Culture: Alcohol, the social pastime

May 31, 2010 at 12:25 pm (Me and the world)

Well, the other day I was out for a family dinner with some other relatives including my cousins. And well, my cousins and I sat at a separate table from my parents so they were just talking freely without any burden of trying to show manner since they were all close. The first thing they talked about: Alcohol. They questioned each other if they have been drinking a lot these days and most of them answered by saying that they drank yesterday. But the really interesting thing was that one was saying that he drank too much and shouldn’t drink today, but he ended up drinking again because it’s part of Korea’s culture.

I find it quite interesting how drinking the Korean 술(sool, a famous alcohol beverage in Korea) can bring people together and make people not so close seem as close as butter and bread. Koreans often times go on dinners with the company when they go out and almost all the time, they go and drink. To make friends in the Korean it seems as though you must be able to drink to some extent. The only problem I see in this is that the drinking culture has been past down to the kids. Kids often act older and somehow get the alcohol and go drinking under age. But when kids drink it’s more of something that is cool to fit in. However, as adults it’s also considered rude to say no when someone older than you hands you a drink and you decline. The Korean culture is very much different from the American as you can see here.


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