[KS] Re: KOR 2000
rupert at aks.ac.kr
Thu Jun 9 01:42:27 EDT 2005
I just checked out the Ministry of Culture's site and Boudewijn Walraven is right. However, methinks something is amiss since some of the early talk about the change concerned the attempt to produce a system of transliteration following the success of Pinyin. The proof of the pudding is that it is impossible to make a perfect system, and since there are so many - exceptions - that they have had no choice but to follow - sound - - to admit it - to keep the system sensible. On their site they say, strangely under the heading of "Changes" that : "Principles of transcriptions are the same as in the old system, in that words are Romanized according to sound, as opposed to a transliteration system..." Then they give examples of those words that were origianlly (as I remember) labelled as exceptions such as - ??[??] Halla; ???[???] Sinmunno; ??[??] Jongno; ???[???] Dongnimmun etc. And then, further down, it says: "the old system did not reflect the phonetic characteristics of the Korean language..." which, seems to suggest the old system did not reflect sound. If they wanted transliteration they should have gone with examples like 'Sinla'. So I guess, it is a compromise.
I think the primary reason for making the new system was for computing, a secondary reason might have been 'nationalistic culture', another reason was the success of Pinyin, and the result was a compromise met between transliteration and sound due to the imposibility of the task to create a perfect system to match the Roman alphabet with Korean letters.
> KOR 2000 -different from the old Ministry of Education system- is not a
> system based on transliteration. I quote from the brochure explaining
> the new system (p. 8): "The basic principles of transcriptions are the
> same as in the old [McR] system, in that words are Romanized according
> to sound, as opposed to a transliteration system, in which Romanization
> would be done according to Korean spelling without regard to
> pronunciation." Hence "Silla" and not "Shinla" (p. 7). That makes it a
> lot less simple. To Koreans it seems more simple because it has adopted
> some features they became familiar with through the system that preceded
> Boudewijn Walraven
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