[KS] Inquiry from a New York Times columnist

Barbara Wall superrhabarber at hotmail.com
Sat Jul 23 00:08:20 EDT 2016

Dear Ron,
interesting question!if you search for first salary 첫월금+ present 선물 many of the results you get mention red underwear 빨간 내복. I am no underwear expert, but what people say is that the custom of wearing "modern" underwear in Korea started only in the 1960s at which time underwear was a luxury item. Dyeing nylon at that time was not easy and worked best with red. That is said to be the reason for the red underwear as symbol of filial piety. Red is also said to have the ability of blocking everything "evil"...

Barbara Wall (Dr. des.)Research Assistant in Korean StudiesAsien-Afrika-Institut, Room 136Universität Hamburg
Edmund-Siemers-Allee 1, Flügel Ost
20146 Hamburg
Tel.: +49-(0)40-42838-6784 
barbara.wall at uni-hamburg.de 


From: lieber at nytimes.com
Date: Thu, 21 Jul 2016 19:51:20 -0400
To: koreanstudies at koreanstudies.com
Subject: [KS] Inquiry from a New York Times columnist

Hello - 

My name is Ron Lieber, and I write the Your Money column for the New York Times -- all about anything and
 everything that hits you in the wallet. I write often about families 
and money -- how not just dollars but also wisdom and values are taught 
and passed between generations. 

On that note, over the years Korean-American 
friends of mine have told me about a tradition where new college 
graduates (or teenagers or college students or even some older adults getting their first 
paychecks at a new, prestigious workplace) buy a gift for their parents after they start their first 
full-time jobs. I've heard about everything from handing the entire 
paycheck over in cash to buying red thermal underwear for both parents or lingerie for 
their mothers. 

I'm trying to trace the origins of this 
tradition and write about how different Korean and Korean-American families 
interpret it today. I think it's something that 
all young adults might want to mimic in some way, whatever their family 
If you can help, I'd be grateful for an email reply -- even if it's to share a story about a gift you've given or received. 
Thanks so much...

Ron Lieber
The New York Times
Your Money columnist
lieber at nytimes.com212-556-1514http://nytimes.com/lieber

"The Opposite of Spoiled" is my book about how -- and why -- to talk to kids about money. For more information, visit http://oppositeofspoiled.com

Twitter: @ronlieber

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