A Team of Kims
While watching women's curling in this year's Olympics, I noticed that all five of the South Korean curlers have the surname Kim. Their coach's surname is also Kim. And the assistant coach? Yes, another Kim. Two of the curlers are sisters, but the others are unrelated.
This article talks about that phenomenon as related to the broader South Korean surname landscape:
- The team members refer to one another as E. Kim, Y. Kim and so forth.
- 1/5 of South Koreans have the surname Kim.
- 64% of South Koreans have one of the 10 most common surnames.
- To avoid confusion, a speaker might use a person's profession along with his surname (i.e. "Reporter Kim") and might also include his given name.
The article also gives some interesting historical background on how this came to be.
It's surprising to me (knowing little about South Korean culture) that the team members don't address one another by their given names!
Tue, 02/20/2018 - 11:35pm