[LETTERS to the editor]Hangul vital to learn KoreanDeputy Editor Tracie Barrett’s book review of “Survival Korean,” written by Stephen Revere, (Practical, functional guide to Korean script and speech, Nov. 24) complains that the book teaches Korean without romanizing any of its dialogues. But as anyone who has been in Korea for a while should know, it’s impossible to learn Korean pronunciation without first spending the oh-so-arduous few hours it takes to learn Hangul. As Revere rightly emphasizes, learning Hangul must be the next step to learning Korean after “camsamnida” ― or is it “cahm-sahm-nee-dah”? Trying to learn spoken Korean, not just written, through romanized Korean dialogues is a method aimed at failure because the phonetic sounds of Korean cannot be romanized correctly.
by John Goranson