When I began Japanese a few years ago I wasn’t aware of Korean dramas, nor was I exposed to Korean music. I wasn’t aware of idol groups and hadn’t yet developed an inexplicable addiction I now seem to have towards them. Back then, I was happy with watching anime because they had cool ass-kicking characters and fantastic plot lines. They were my only source of asian entertainment and I loved it.
But now, I find myself scouring the net for more dramas and music that are Korean. And that has had me worried for a while now. Mainly because, I’m learning Japanese. One of the golden rules for learning a new language is to expose oneself to TV shows and music of that language as much as possible. Won’t spending more time on Korean dramas affect my studies?
There aren’t many exciting options for Japanese out there. The only Japanese music I seem to like are from rock bands (not the Visual Kei ones). This affinity to them is due to the American alternative rock bands that I used to listen to when I was a kid. Most of the bands I have been exposed to are due to anime. While I do like their music, I don’t find them as attractive as Korean Pop. Their songs have catchy music and choreography. The singers are good looking. Not to mention, I more exposed to them than I am to Japanese bands thanks to Youtube.
It’s the same with the dramas. I wondered why I kept going back to Korean dramas instead of looking for shows in Japanese and I realised it was because of the same two reasons I mentioned before. Availability and attractiveness quotient of Korean dramas trumps over Japanese every time.
I am worried that my fascination for pretty Korean idols is slowing my process of learning Japanese. Sometimes I feel I want to divide the time I spend on learning Japanese to accommodate learning Korean as well. There are limited resources to keep in touch with Japan. Anime doesn’t hold the same appeal as it did before. Japanese dramas are exaggerated and quality screams low budget. Variety shows are hard to find on the internet.
To all those who are learning Japanese and Korean at the same time, what do you do to keep your interest in the languages alive? How do you manage learning two languages at the same time without the fear of one overbearing the other? What are your sources for listening practice in Japanese?