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Being Black in South Korea

Being Black in South Korea

Oh snap, here we go. Before we get started, I want to go ahead and preface that these experiences are my own with a few of my other friends of color’s stories mixed in. This is a delicate subject for most (everyone) people and I already anticipate differing opinions, but I feel like it’s important for me to actually speak on what I have seen and done in reference to my race while here in Korea.

When I first decided to come to Korea, I admit I was absolutely terrified about how I was going to be received because of my skin color. It’s not a secret that Korea, like many other countries in the world, celebrates paler skin and more Caucasian features. That’s not to say that they are deliberately racist or anything of the sort, but Korea specifically is more exposed to Hollywood and other Western stereotypes that perpetuate that white is beautiful. Of course, there are two sides to every coin and whatnot, but the general consensus from what I have seen is that pale skin is more popular. There have also been many different cases of racism and stereotyping when it comes to people of color by Korean celebrities and regular people alike. Whether this is simply from ignorance or the fact that people here genuinely see black people in a certain light, these questionable moments have happened, and knowing they have happened made me extremely wary before I even stepped off the plane.

When I first arrived I was in the protective embrace of orientation where everyone was from somewhere else and we were all fish out of water, so really at no point did my race come up as anything other than “What country are you from?” It wasn’t until we went on our first field trip to Jeonju, a beautiful city not far from Daejeon where orientation was held, that I felt it. Now, I understand the situation wasn’t a normal one. There were basically a million foreigners storming the streets of this village like town while the natives were also out in full force, staring us down. Of course, now my reaction seems a little silly, but at the time I almost had a genuine panic attack in the midst of such a crowd goggling us like we were a TV show. I’m getting anxiety just from thinking about it now.

My reaction to people looking at me didn’t stop in Jeonju.

When we got to Chungju, where I currently live, every time we went into E-Mart and I accidentally got in someone’s way or made eye contact, even just felt someone’s presence around me, my reaction was instantaneous. I would mumble out an apology and physically shrink into myself like I was about to be hit. Now, back home, this reaction would have been beyond strange for me. I’m not necessarily known for being shy in any way shape or form, so for my reaction to be so strong and instinctual was something that required some soul searching. After months of this ongoing strange behavior, along with everyone’s comments when they realized what I was doing, I found the cause. It was because I continued to wait for someone to have a negative reaction to my presence, and I was literally mentally and physically repelling it before I had a chance to examine anyone’s reaction at all.

As time went on I finally stopped being so afraid.

It’s not because I no longer notice, because I do, or that I no longer care, because that would also be a lie, but because now I’m actually curious. Sometimes I will stare at people and they will stare me back down, but at least now I know, for the most part, that they’re just trying to figure me out.

Rather than looking for blatantly negative moments, it’s the subtle ones that happen every once in a while that really bother me. Like when the students that come in for the week automatically think I’m from Africa or Jamaica. Or when they only have Obama or hip hop videos as reference to what they think my life is like in America. Something inside of me dies literally anytime anyone says, “Yo yo, what’s up man?!” to me simply because they think that’s how I talk on a regular basis, as if I would ever speak like that in a classroom setting or even on the regular for that matter.

Most of the time my race doesn’t come up at all. My co-teachers in particular don’t ever comment on my skin color, merely the fact that I’m a foreigner. Unfortunately, I know this cannot be said for all of my friends here in Korea. Especially when the Ebola virus broke out, even in Korea, thousands of miles from anywhere that had anyone who was infected, started panicking and looking suspiciously at all black people. I was on the subway with a friend of mine who is also of color and has natural hair and an older man laughed, pointed and loudly exclaimed as he was walking by, “Africa, ebola!”

Needless to say, neither of us found this even slightly amusing.

Another time a friend of mine came to visit from America and as we walked through the subway this drunk ahjussi screamed, in albeit slurred, but detectable, English, “GO BACK TO YOUR F- – – – – – COUNTRY!” Now, there was also a foreign couple right in front of us who turned to see who he was talking to, and there’s no way to know if it was about us being foreign or both my friend and I being black, but it was shocking nonetheless. That has been the only event that has truly stuck out in my mind as obviously negative. There are of course the horror stories you’ll hear about taxi drivers not wanting to take someone somewhere because of their color, or someone making a blatantly rude comment, but for the most part, I haven’t had more than those few small incidents happen to me.

Despite my physical appearance, I often feel just as comfortable as I do at home.

Racism exists everywhere, in small doses or large depending on where you live, but for the most part here it often seems to be less about my race and more the fact that I’m a foreigner. Of course, people see that I’m black, but I’ve gotten less commentary on it here than I do at home. In Texas I’m constantly aware of the fact that I’m a different color. In Korea I’m more constantly aware that I’m simply a waygook and people are more likely to look at me strangely because I can’t figure out the recycling system.

What I’m really trying to wrap up with here, in a long-winded sort of way, is that my initial fears of being something of a social outcast in Asia because I’m African-American were completely unfounded. Of course, this is just my take of things because I know others have had different experiences. However, though I’m certainly happy when I see others who look like me, it’s not a huge deal when I don’t. I no longer try to count the amount of other black people I see when I’m walking down the street in Seoul, nor do I no longer scramble for some kind of unseen social foothold. I feel as accepted as if I simply moved somewhere else in the States. If your only reasoning for not wanting to move abroad is your race, as I know several others who actually struggle with this, I say don’t worry about it. Those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.

Or something like that.

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187 thoughts on "Being Black in South Korea"

  1. Kim says:

    What a great read. When I was travelling in East Asia, I noticed a heavy push in the beauty industry on skin-whitening cream and snail creams. Coming from Canada, I just thought that was really odd. (And slightly crazy!) After starting to learn Korean, and after knowing that Koreans too have this cultural desire for pale skin, I wondered what it would be like to live as a Black woman in Korea and how this odd cultural obsession would translate.

  2. TIDA says:

    Hi,
    I’M 31 YEAR OLD black American. One of my top five list of countries I want to visit and live in for little while is south korea. I love the Korean culture, place and I’m a big fan of most of it kpop stars. I want to visit the beautiful country of South Korea to see it for myself just that truth be told u m scared being black. Growing up in Anchorage Alaska. In U.S in general the struggles and everyday battles we face being black everyday those wonded some times there unbearable. I’m 200 percent proud of being black cause black is beautiful. I wish that we can be treated as equal in other countries thats why I don’t judge place or country until i experience it even that im scared of how am might be looked or view for being black.

  3. Pamilerin says:

    I’m pamilerin,I wish one thing that the Koreans should pls think of it that and consider us also that we are both created by God that I dont think it’s a good idea to separate us from them,I love korea very much,I hope I will also check this message again when am there,I’m from Nigeria,and I want everyone to be moderate and caring,consider the blacks too okay,korea is the best place I wish to go,but it do pains me the if I go there they will want to separate themselves, I know all the criticism will stop one day,because we are also created for one reason,I love korea thanks

    1. Samuel says:

      Yh, am Samuel also from Nigeria. I love south Korea very much, I wish to study and live there but the fear of racism do hold me back.
      We’ll needs to be treated equally, I won’t give up, I will visit the South Korea one day to see for myself.

  4. Tushy says:

    Hey! I’m black and I love Korea so much and would like to do my masters there… I don’t know how the would see me there

    1. Maryam says:

      Every since have grown up and watch movies on my own, what always come to my mind is me schooling in south Korea or work because I love there cultures, dressing,the beautiful atmosphere and all but then this question will come to my mind I will be like have never seen a black in your movies,or as an artist and all hope this won’t be a problem for me if I go and I do think of my financial capabilities too

  5. Liz Matz says:

    I’m half Korean half white, graduated high school in Korea did fourth and sixth grade and was born there sorry that was backwards lol but I had tons of friends and classmates that were black or half black whether black and Korean or black and white or whatever, and if anything they were idolized or adulated when we were off base. Koreans tend to be really socially behaved or aspire to not stand out for odd behavior or anything socially unlike the status quo. The older ones i.e. the elderly are gonna be the ones who will be more opinionated or having an old-fashioned outlook if I may, but don’t fear going anywhere because of your race is my advice especially not Korea. I was asked often for my autograph lol and that was just for being half white, that or just being American. The language is easy to learn once you’re immersed in it easy to pick up even to read. And in all the years I lived there I never encountered any untoward attitudes against Black people just an all or curiosity and again that is towards Americans in general OK, anything outsideKorean culture wows them and intrigues them. Good luck and live your life to the fullest, without fear

    1. Kimberly says:

      ❤️

  6. Pearl says:

    Hi, I am looking at coming to Korea university for my masters but I am a bit scared because I don’t know anyone there

    1. Daphney says:

      Me too

  7. Johnson says:

    I have a visit visa and will be traveling any moment from January 2022. Can one get a job with a visiting visa?

    1. Shannon Pedersen says:

      Hi Johnson,
      You should carefully read any regulations and requirements for the visiting visa of the country you are visiting. We cannot give visa advice.

  8. Esther says:

    Thanks for sharing your true experience on being black in Korea. I’m a Congolese and I’m 100% in love with Korea and plan on going there. My fear is just that I’m dark in complexion and I don’t handle people staring at me well, but I hope the country evolves enough for people to just walk next to each other a without being stared at for being a different race

    1. Beatrice says:

      I want to visit too. I am Kenyan who is in love with Congolese and Korean culture. lol. Let’s plan a trip. Seriously.

  9. makyah says:

    Thanks for sharing , I honestly love Korean movies/tv shows I watch them all day. I want to go to Korea one day when I’m much older but I’m scared. I never really see a lot of black people and I wouldn’t know how they would react to me being there. Everyone is not a bad person but I just worry sometimes because it’s very rare to see black people in Korea. I want to go to college there and be a lawyer or doctor. I would just hope I would be accepted.

    1. E says:

      Absolutely love Korean movies and have always loved the culture. Being older and black I have not really had time to dive into hobbies with family work life etc since my last child dived of to university I decided to focus on me!
      I have had time to do things I like watching Korean movies whilst I was studying has been just amazing I am obsessed so my husband states. I now would like to teach in Korea but it does worry me about being black and finding a role but I’m determined so I’ll not let my fear break me your blog has definitely helped I’m so excited on my next journey.

  10. South koreans says:

    As a South Korean
    We are now very interested in racism problems. And always trying to be careful about it when we meet foreign people. Some of elderly are a bit jerk. . But understand it. They suffered so much with war, poverty, and pressure of government. . .etc. We young koreans are going to lead the country in the future and we are really trying to learn other culture in the world.

    And
    No one is gonna hit you because u are a black. Koreans are not likely to harm others, they think it’s a shame and weird. So they don’t steal laptop on a cafe table even the owner is not there. Hey think its a rule. We koreans really hate anti social behaviors.
    If someone’s hit you that jerk probably would be a anti social who read lots of postings talking about bad things about black and reveal that rage to black. He must go to jail.
    We koreans have our own language, and our society has developed economy so much by Korean’s “teamwork” with koreans special community rules. So i think koreans have a strong community spirit. It’s really hard to be really into “koreans community spirit” even some koreans are kicked out if they reveal their opposite thoughts or act weird. Even some weird koreans feel hard about koreans community u can imagine how tough it would be for foreigners..
    They play with themselves and work themselves because they never experienced foreigners historically and comfortable with the current state.
    Some koreans are not ready to accept foreigners maybe. But young people are really open minded and welcomed.
    When koreans see foreigners they are little bit surprised because they rarely see foreigners. without surprising, there is no other feelings like hate, like, scary toward foreigners. We are just surprised a little bit and go back to our previous thinking like damn i have to go to work, i wanna go home what should i eat for lunch like that hahahaahaha

    If i see you i will greet you with a smile
    Have a nice day

    1. Violet says:

      Wow….. You explained things very well ……i also love korea and when I grow up , I would love to live there ….thanks alot for your explanation it has actually cleared up some of my doubts

    2. Gillian Thomas says:

      Thank you for responding to this blog. There are so many people of color who are in love with the Korean culture. Most of us just want to have the opportunity to learn from people who are different. That will make us all better people. I’m 50 and I would love to visit South Korea. I am cheering on the young people who will carry the future. Let’s find the common ground and build a better world!!!

    3. Reward Madumere says:

      Thanks so much dear, I love you guys

  11. Naeemah says:

    i love the culture of south korea i’m a very shy person so i will love to visit korea and make friends

  12. Sarah says:

    Thank you for sharing your experience. I want to travel to South Korea but I would say I’m a sensitive person and find it hard to disregard being stored at. Unfortunately little things like that can really put a damper on my day and make it really hard to think about anything else or to be distracted. Seeing other comments too does make me feel less alone already. I do fear traveling there because I don’t know anyone who would want to go whether they’re white or black. A part of me loves the idea of studying there but it’s hard to be positive about a place that is known for racism.

  13. Oladimeji Hassan says:

    My name is oladimeji Hassan from Nigeria in ibadanWow I love south Korean that is my dream country I prayed to God everyday to be there a least for 10years but the only things is am black even in Nigeria here I face many racist about bulled of me being black
    My skin I too Black so many people here told me that I can’t be accepted by any foreign countries I feel ashamed sometimes I ask God why am Nigerian

    1. Rona says:

      It’s okay…. I’m Nigerian too. And it does not matter what anybody thinks. In the end it boils down to what you want. Your dreams and the effort you put in. Don’t give up

  14. JSKTO says:

    Honestly I like Blacks way better than the Chinese or SE Asians. Japanese and Koreans are great people and extremely honest!

    1. Ruro says:

      That’s nice

  15. Downlife says:

    I lived in South Korea for 6 years. 2 years master and 4 years of PhD. From my experience, Korea is a nice place to travel and for healthy and tasty food. But whether its a university or a job, they have a strange culture (of strict hierarchy and discrimination) which is quite intolerable, especially if you are foreigner. The colleagues (both senior and juniors) are always competing with you, no matter how much you try to be friendly with them. But, if you meet them outside of your professional life, they can be so better than your besties.
    For travelling, my advise is Korea is a best option but if you want a job or study in Korea do a brief research about that field first, list up your pros and cons and then only come to Korea.
    Good luck for your happy life everyone

  16. Cecilia says:

    Hi my name is Cecilia I’m Afro-Italian, I just wanted to say that I really love South Korea and their culture food etc… Actually I was thinking about my future and I was thinking to do the Uni In Korea but the fear stopped me… Because of the fear of not having friends or the fear of facing many racist people, I’m black so I was scared to think about my future of going in Korea but you know everything changed when months ago I was on YouTube and I saw this video of this girl saying that she was gonna go and do the Uni in Korea from that moment I decided that I wanted to make my dream true and that no one is gonna stop me. Another reason why I was scared to think that in the future I would like to go in Korea and do my studies here was ” I’m in Italy and I am deciding to think about going in Asia without my family without my friends and let everything in Italy” I was scared but now I’m not scared anymore. My dream is to go and study in Korea, my dream university is Yonsei university and I really want to be a doctor. The first time I heard the name Yonsei University I was like you know what lemme research more about this University and the more I did my research the more I started loving this University I finded out that If I want to do the medical school at Yonsei University I have to study Korean because all my lessons will be taught in Korean but no worries I’m starting to study Korean… Right now I’m studying hard to make my dreams come true I’m 13 so I’m really trying hard to make my dream to go in Korea come true. Never give up and always try and try put your blood sweat and tears and you will see that you will be repayed.
    Love from Cecilia.

  17. Odii blessing says:

    My name is blessing, am 17 years old and am a black girl I would love to visit Korea one day and see the way they live their lives there, probably I would love to leave in Korea. Like they say you never can tell where you will meet your self tomorrow and I would love to make friends with Korea people.but now I would love to go to Korea because it one of my dreams I would love to fulfill.thanks

  18. Odii blessing says:

    My name is blessing, am 17 years old and am a black girl I would love to visit Korea one day and see the way they live their lives there, probably I would love to leave in Korea. Like they say you never can tell where you will meet your self tomorrow and I would love to make friends with Korea people.but now I would love to go to Korea because it one of my dreams I would love to fulfill.

  19. channy chiegil says:

    i feel like if we can all just work together, maybe make a small group on instagram or so and discuss this issue together as one family trying our best to see ourselves in South Korea, that will be awesome. I am so glad to see that the exact reason and burden i had is what everyone is saying here, please let’s get together, what do you guys think.

    1. Rona says:

      Great idea

  20. Ashinax says:

    Hello, my name is Ashinax. I’m an african american wanting to move to a different country. I have always fascinated going to korea, despite the negative stuff about it. At first, i was hesitant, but, once i took a flight to south korea for just a week to visit some friends the experience was everything, obviously, people are going to stare at you, make “rude” or hurtful comments about my or your skin, because they just aren’t used to it. I’m hoping to be one of korea’s first african american actress, or artist. But that’s gonna be a while.

  21. Zaire says:

    I too want to go to south Korea, but i feel like the Korean language just speaking is way too hard for me, I don’t think i’ll be able to speak it but i’ll definitely know how to read it. I’m black, and young too. I wanted to go to so many countries but just reading how racist some of those countries are it’s sad. I want to go to South Korea and stay there for a while, i want to be kind of like a tourist there, once i know the ideal image i can head back into america.

  22. Alex says:

    Well um hi I’m Alexa I’m actually not African American but I’m kinda brown skinned ? I guess and um yeah it will sound sooo weird but I always wanted to be Korean I would sometimes cry about it lmao but yeah I just wanted to share that cause I kinda feel bad knowing it’s impossible since I’m already… me here bye I guess I just wanted to share that have a great day afternoon evening or night I hope you are okay and eat well bye

  23. Chenzie says:

    Ok, so far I’ve not come across any Kenyan in the comment section… I’m a Kenyan girl and I’ve always wanted to go to South Korea for University studies. I really loved this article. I love their culture, talent and technology but I wasn’t so sure whether I should go because of racism but I feel encouraged after reading your article… thank you so much 💜

  24. DeAzea says:

    I am 15 years old about to be 16 and I really want to visit South Korea one but I know I’m not going to understand what people are saying because I can’t speak Korean but I would love to learn the language though. I am black and I don’t want no Korean person to be racist to me because it is not right at all everyone should be treating equally. One day I would love to meet a nice Korean friend and who can help me. I am a huge fan of BTS and I really want to go to a concert in South Korea and see them perform but I don’t wanna lose my confidence when I’m in South Korea because of my skin color. So I need help anyone can give me a little advice

    1. Shannon Pedersen says:

      Hi DeAzea,
      You should check out our Teen Summer Language Camp in South Korea! https://greenhearttravel.org/program/teen/language-camps/korea
      We accept students who are complete beginners with the language and you can get an authentic homestay experience, too!

  25. Debby says:

    I love south Korea, I am a Nigerian too and I solely love South Korea. If only north was like them too ( without the racism)!

  26. Anisa says:

    Hiya! Funny, your name is very similar to mine XD Anyways, thanks for this. I am thinking of going to uni in Korea but I’ve heard horror stories about racism that scared me (as an African, from Nigeria) so…kinda needed this to get my confidence back 🙂

  27. Elizabeth Oladipupo says:

    Annyhaseyo Lizzy mida. Hello am Elizabeth from Nigeria I really wish to visit Korea some days and I won’t even be bothered about my skin because Black is beautiful I will prove that to the them and the world, the thinking about black people must change from bad to good. That is one of my dream and God help me and I love my Park shin hye and someone should help me tell her that I will meet her some day I love Korean much love to you. Kumawo

  28. dong hwan says:

    as one of sourth korean, i really envy your proficient English(it’s definitely true). so don’t be depressed for poor-korean language!
    i think every people in the world would be poor for foreign language at the first time
    and i hope that i could see you in our country:>

    1. Ore says:

      I want to visit your country too ,I’m black, I watch some koreans on YouTube and they seem nice ,I really want to visit , my name is ore I’m from Nigeria

  29. Peace says:

    Hi, am a black girl from Nigeria and I really want to go to south Korea I mean I just everything about them, I have also learn very,very little of their language I hope I catch on, but the fear of racism is really something for me. It as been my dream since sec school, but am afraid😓, how would they treat us black? Horribly right? But am not gonna let that pull me back. I love Korean so much🤗🤗.

  30. newlady says:

    Interesting article. Yeah, a lot of racism in Asia is just from a monolithic culture and only being exposed to Hollywood and white wealth. People are usually not ill-intentioned, but many of them literally have not had an opportunity to meet new people or go anywhere (due to poverty mainly). Cool article 🙂

  31. Chiara Chiara says:

    I love this. I graduated high school from Korea. Only Discrimination I felt when I initially arrived was being fat. And it was more Americans that then actual fat. But I got into the culture and that was not an issue. I love Korean had a great time. Thanks for posting this. Oh yes Im black.

  32. Boiketlo says:

    Hi
    I’m Boiketlo, a 14 year old black girl who loves kpop,kdrama and korea itself and wish I could be able to move there some day. I’m worried about my skin colour and how people are gonna treat me there as a foreigner. I also wanted to go to uni there but I already know my parents won’t agree so I can’t wait till I’m independent. Even with all this I still wanna go there. Love you lots Korea. 사랑해요 한국 (I love you Korea)

    1. tertia says:

      OMG SAME :0
      i really want to study in South Korea for university but i was scared because of my skin colour ….and because of my parents …..but anyways i hope to at least do my honours or study my second year in south korea :>

  33. xoxo says:

    Hi thanks for posting this, are you still in Korea? I’d like to Visit Korea.

    1. Shannon Pedersen says:

      We still offer opportunities to Teach English in South Korea! Feel free to find more information here: https://greenhearttravel.org/program/adult/teach/tesol-south-korea

  34. Rodiat says:

    I am currently 16 and I want go to Uni in South Korea. However I have a fear that it’s too expensive, I won’t understand what anyone is saying. People would be racist to me since I am black and that I won’t make friends. I want to live in Seoul marry a korean man and live my best life. Also i’m not really sure what sort of job I could get there because I can’t speak Korean. Does anyone have any advice for me lol

    1. sadia says:

      I know it seems very hard, the fact of going to a foreign completely unknown country (i say unknown because is a country I supposed you weren’t there before or you didn’t know or speak the language) so my advice to you is to try with the years left until you decide to go to university, try to learn the basic words and a little bit of research of their culture, how they live, money, etc. and trust me if you by the end you decide to go there it will help you a lot. btw my name is Sadia.

    2. Ada says:

      I am also 16 and currently studying language in Korea. Personally I think it’s a bit expensive but it’s manageable.
      I think you should learn the language first and there are schools here for that.

      1. Ore says:

        English language? Or other foreign languages? And when you study that ,do you become a teacher or what job would you get ,I’m thinking of coming to do my masters there

    3. Kai says:

      Hey ik I don’t have a solution, but I can tell you that I’m also really scared. I’m getting mixed signals about going, and I’m already shy. I want to do an exchange program with my school, but I’m so worried about the type of reactions I’m going to get. I want to go with friends because I will feel much better but at some point I want to live there make movies and bring it to Hollywood I just don’t really want to do it alone since it seems a bit scary with the different reaction from many people.

    4. Betty says:

      Some universities in Korea offer a Korean learn course free of charge. I am not that sure about living expenses and stuff like that but I know that in things are somewhat cheap converted in dollars. If you are scared of racism don’t worry all you need is confidence cause you are beautiful

    5. anonymous says:

      The fact that you can’t speak Korean doesn’t stop you from actually going there. I mean…what’s the harm in learning it. I’m currently learning Korean actually because I wanna take dance classes there.
      Also, not all Koreans are racists,and the percentage of them that are,is reducing. I have some Korean friends and they never taunt me with my colour.

      Wish you all the best❤

    6. Oluwakemi says:

      Just try and learn their language a little
      And you can also join online Korea language learning
      Never give up
      I believe you can do so

    7. Isha Bira Mona says:

      Yes same as me but I believe there is nothing impossible in these world

    8. Zaire says:

      I also can’t speak korean as good as others, i can just read it. I also think south korea is very accepting towards black people because they did make peace with the africans a while back, so getting a job there won’t be hard. I think you have to learn to speak some easy words in korean, just as a little chat. I don’t think they would be racist to you, but just comment on your skin color because it is so unusual to them that they don’t know it’s racist.

    9. channy chiegil says:

      I also have the same issue as you but as Anyssa said, the more you’re afraid of what people will think, the more scared you will be. i am 15 and i also want the exact same thing with you, i think we can be friends then, i dont know how possible that will be but let’s see if together we can overcome this fear and see ourselves in South korea. By the way, do you know BTS?

    10. Sky says:

      There aren’t many jobs you could do without knowing Korean, you could become an English teacher (korean isn’t needed) but you need a bachelors degree. The best thing to do is to stay in school in a country where you understand the language, get a bachelors degree, and then move to Korea. English teachers here have free housing depending on their program.

    11. Nandine says:

      Omg I’m 16 too and really want to go to Korea so badly for uni. I suggest u download dulingo u can learn millions of new languages there.

    12. Faith says:

      My dear we both are in thesame shoes I just turned 17 and my dream too is Korea. About the language thing you can try learning it just as am doing here. If going there is really your thing then don’t dare give up. Fear no one or what they think about your colour. Black is unique all those racist are being jealous. Oh How I wish I meet some one who talks trash to me about my colour. This is a whole new era. They hate black because they think we are stupid. Well hell no. I really do love korea to the core but that racism thing makes me furious. Anyway that was what I had to say. Fear no one. We weren’t born for them to impress their eyes. They have five fingers so do i. OMG I am so loving thing. Thanks dear follow you dream without thinking twice😉

    13. Janicia S Williams says:

      If your passion is to attend uni in south korea then go for it. Also start learning how to speak the language as well.

    14. Bonita says:

      This is me right now!!! Though I’m 17. Well a little advice could be you could get a head start on learning Korean phrases and get classes. Duolingo helps and KoreanClass101.com is pretty good too. I know racism is every where but I admit you have to be mentally prepared. In all honesty, I hope when I’m of age, I’m replying to this message and saying how I’m in a good literature course and have friends who care about me and not my skin. I hope this helps

    15. Hanana says:

      I have the same wish too and I have the same fears. I’m African.

    16. Faith Wangu says:

      I feel the same way, but my family don’t understand. They keep telling me Koreans are racist. Reading this post helped relieve my fears. I’ll be going back to school on 4th as I go for my last run and finish high school this march and I hope to be admitted in a uni in South Korea. Hope we both achieve our dreams and probably, someday we’ll meet.
      I’m from Kenya by the way

  35. Aleah says:

    Hi my name is aleah I think I replied already but I can’t see my post anyway I’m African American and I’m black I so admire south korea and south korean people sutch as their food and style and the way they do things i want to go there someday but I’m afraid they will judge me by my color but I won’t give up my dream I will marry a south korea man who will love me and make me smile and feel safe and be happy you guys comments gave me more support 😊 and it was amazing hearing your story’s don’t give up chyo (Good luck) and 감사합니다 (Thank you ) bye bye

    1. Betty says:

      Don’t be afraid of racism , be confident love yourself

    2. sami says:

      they will judge you by your color, everywhere will, you’re black and that’s a struggle wherever you go. And I’m rooting for you in your journey to SK! I hope you do make it there nd make the best out of it. One thing I do have to point out tho is be careful of romanticization of the country, the men are still men there and it’s still a country with its own struggles. Keep your mind open, not every man can make you smile, and South Korean men are just like men in any other country. Do your research on it more, see public opinions, environmental issues, cost of living, etc. It would be horrible to be blindsided in a new country.

    3. T!FFANY says:

      OMG Literally samee
      Soul sister type beat lol

  36. Aleah says:

    Hi my name is aleah I am African American and I so admire south korean people dutch as their style and food and I want to go their someday and I am black I’m afraid that their going to judge me by my color but I’m not going to give up my dream I’ll keep going thanks for the support in your comments guys you just gave me a lot of support it was honestly special hearing your story’s 🤞🖤

    1. A'alia says:

      Well, I mostly have no interest in going to korea whatsoever. But am a black girl I just wanted to find out if black people are treated well in Korea. Although am kinda a fan of k-pop😁

  37. JessicaFB says:

    Thank you for sharing this. I had a client who was an expat in Korea, and I follow some YouTubers who are expats in Korea, all who are Americans with African descent. I wondered if they experienced racism in Korea. I could have asked, but I looked it up. It really moved me, especially this part: “I found the cause. It was because I continued to wait for someone to have a negative reaction to my presence, and I was literally mentally and physically repelling it before I had a chance to examine anyone’s reaction at all.” Because although I am caucasian, I relate to this. Fear of rejection. I feel it in certain situations especially and it’s been triggering a lot of introspection for me. Anyway, loved this article. Thank you for sharing!

  38. Joshua says:

    Hi thank you for posting your thoughts about your experience, ive travelled over the world to different countries and I’ve faced racism comments and slurs and to be honest I find it amusing, I mostly laugh it off and this always angers the the person saying the racist comments. I don’t know but I dont take it offensive non watsoever. And by the way am a jamiacan

    1. Sarah says:

      I wish I could do that. I’d love to laugh it off. Maybe I believe in some situations it may be easier for me to laugh it off like if someone was to shout racist comments at me randomly on the street I may find it funny just based on the fact that it’s the same as a random person coming up to you shouting nonsense for no reason. Other than that I can only hope I’d have better reactions to racism there.

  39. Precious says:

    Oh gosh I really like South Korea but because I am skin different I think I may be isolated i know how speak some of their language and can sing some of their songs I watch their movies and browse about their actors and actressesI really wish that one day I will be there and I pray I will be treated well I love South Korea💗💞💕❣️💟

    1. sadia says:

      the important you have faith and confidence. don’t put your mind on the direction of the comments from them and “live your life remember you only live it once”. -Sadia

    2. Gaone says:

      You go girl. I also love South Korea and the culture, I love K-pop music and I always watch kdrama everyday. I’m a BTS Army and I’ve always wondered how Koreans treat black people, I also watch videos of black people telling their stories about racism in Korea. But sometimes I get relieved because BTS is with us, they love black people a lot. I am actually an African from Botswana and I love meddling with foreigners. My dream is to go to South Korea and make a living there but I get discouraged thinking of what they will say and how they will treat me

  40. Michael says:

    I see everyone really wants to go to Korea…
    I’ve myself have always want to stay or maybe live in Korea,ever since when I was a kid,still believes I’m gonna go there someday. I don’t think anything can change my mind. I just love everything about them down to their lifestyle.

  41. Ralph Nerren says:

    It’s hard to say

  42. Kayla says:

    Wow this really helped. I love Korea and I wanted to change my mind because of racism. I’m a very dark Imolite of Nigeria, west Africa and I thought going there for high school would be the worst.

    1. Angel says:

      Hi, I’m also a Nigerian living in Imo. I’ve always dream to there since I was 10 I pray my dream will come through one day.

    2. Chinelo says:

      am also from Nigeria but from Anambra and am planning to go there for college

    3. James Bedu Kodjo Eric Graham says:

      Korea is changing but racism persists across the entire Spectrum of Society
      Only the youth can change things.

  43. Bianca Amor says:

    I really like the place their people no matter how they behave non chalently or lackdasical i still like them their all handsome and nice while looking at them i just feel like schooling there but i dont know their language and their food but i can cope with that thanks for your speech am greatful cause you removed fear from my body

  44. Health says:

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  45. Benita Daniel says:

    Annyeonghaseyo(Hello)My name is Daniel Benita,I’m from Nigeria,and I would really love to go to South Korea one day,I really love everything about South Korea to the extent that my mom even calls me Miss Korea. I love their Language I’m learning how to speak it small small,I really wish and hope that I go to South Korea one day and get married to one of them because South Korea is my dream country. Saranghae ❤

    1. Anisa says:

      Ooh same here Benita! I’m also from Nigeria and learning Korean 😛

  46. Dawn says:

    This article helped
    Am a Nigerian girl who loves kdrama
    I also hope to go there.
    But i think we all need to boost our self esteem.

    1. Mike Tyson says:

      I also love that Country I’m planning to go there one day,
      That day would be most happiest day of my life

  47. Prudence says:

    Hi I’m a south African girl who also loves south Korea, their food, k-dramas and the culture as well. I really want to go there, and I’m aware that racism is probably there. I have my own fears and I’m really trying to not let other people’s opinions change my mind about going to teach there. Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I’m taking a leap of faith and hope I learn more and grow as well.

    1. Biance amor says:

      Am a south Africa girl i really like their ways i mean the way they do am a fan to their drama and all the rest it gives me so much happiness to see their behavior
      I really like this people am just afraid of their discrimination thanks for sharing your experience with us at lest i can still come there thanks babe ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

      1. Gaone says:

        Well I guess we can go together someday. I’m from Botswana and I love Koreans a lot. I just hope they could change their minds about black people

    2. Scorye says:

      Omg me too 🥺 but I have an Asian friend who wants to go with me when we get older

  48. Mario Desmond says:

    Hello, I have dreams to go there too…and hopefully I will I just hope they accept me since am nigerian…I really love that country…especially for their music and culture…

  49. Vincent Kinney says:

    Am a Ghanaian and my dream country is Korea I always want to go to Korea but because am a black i feel discouraged that I may be criticized about my color. And after watch and reading this am encouraged to go to Korea

  50. jeslyn says:

    Racism against Black people in Korea is mainly taken from Hollywood’s version of Black people. This is not likely to change any time soon, especially since there are so few Black people in Korea so most people wouldn’t even have experience with them but only draw upon what they see in US news and entertainment which often presents a biased view of Black people. People need to stop thinking racism and prejudice is a specific Korean issue. A Korean or Asian person in Uganda also get stared at, called “Ching chong” and get rude slanted eye gestures.

  51. Esther says:

    Am planning on going to korea to teach am from nigeria tho.although have been hearing a lot about racism there but i will still take my stand as long as i still have passion for korea. I would like it if some korean people hit me up so we could become friend before coming and i also need some advice.whatsapp 08105783020.

  52. Fashion says:

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  53. Cassy says:

    I am Nigerian who just started dating a korean andhe asked if i would rather live in the US or Korea in future. i freaked out and avoided the question because in as much as i love Korean culture, i am terrified that it might be horrible to stay in Korea due to racism(I didn’t tell him this). This post helps us a lot. Thanks, i can now be more open minded when Oppa asks again

  54. Zenab karim says:

    Am a Ghanaian and since lower primary I had this great passion and love for Koreans and hope to attend college there buh after knowing that the racism rate is high am really scared buh that the same time I know I have the courage to stand them when I make it there some day.
    And also am a Muslim will they accept me. Am very scared but when I think of the idea of going there I become happy and strong and a very good feeling.

    1. Patience Nkansah says:

      Hi am Ghanaian as well! I really want to go to Korea as well. Its been a year and I was wondering if you have already been?

  55. Anchor says:

    I am a Korean and studied in the U.S.
    Because I studied race relations the hardest during those years, I see things a bit differently from most others as far as how South Korea sees blackness.

    And, I just want to say a big “Thank You” for being fair on how my country sees it.
    It is rare to find a person like yourself and takes a lot to be fair and open-minded as a person of color.

    I can say this not only because I’ve studied the subject most seriously but because being an Asian in west, we have our own struggles – othering, demasculinization, un-representation by the media, etc.

    I found this page, while doing research for my YouTube channel – focused racism against Asians and sometimes about racism – people need to be educated about the true definition of racism when they discuss it.

    Thank you once again for being fair.

    I hope that you keep staying around for long.

  56. Israel Godfirst says:

    Am from Nigeria, I mean happy you share your experience with us because I wanted to go to Korea too but I don’t know how it will look like there because of my skin colour. Thanks I will go there someday to fulfill my dream

  57. Nevaeh says:

    Do you still live in south Korea ?
    How old were you when you moved to South Korea
    Do you see other color skin in Korea
    I’m 13 but I want to go to Korea in the future and that’s way I’m asking all these questions
    Well that’s all I had to ask thank you for you time

  58. Masa Thema says:

    Wow, I came about this page because I simply searching for successful black people in Korea. But this article was such a blessing instead.
    Anyways I am a university student in Botswana ,Africa, and I’m wondering how hard would it be for me to get a teaching job abroad in South Korea?
    I love their food so much and I’m currently on level 2 of intermediate Korean Language.

    1. JP says:

      In my extended Korean family in Seoul, a foreigner is a foreigner. No one of different color would be treated any different. They are thrilled to have great foreign teachers!!❤️

    2. JP says:

      In my extended Korean family in Seoul; a foreigner is a foreigner. No one of different color would be treated any different.

    3. Gaone says:

      I am also from Botswana and I really want to go to South Korea but I’m scared of going there alone.

  59. Siddhi Thakur says:

    Thank you so much for sharing your ideas.🙏🙏

  60. Pearl says:

    I love Koreans…i love Korea

  61. Khari says:

    🖤 Thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences. It has helped a lot.

  62. Hammed Ibrahim says:

    I’m a Muslim guy from Nigeria and my dream about visiting Korea (my dream country) is growing everyday. I love this country more than any country else even my own country. As long as I can speak a little bit Korean and understand their culture. I watched their dramas and movies a lot just because of the love I have for the country and the people living there. I would love to visit Korea someday but I don’t know how they will react to my skin color since I’m black. I really want to make friends with Koreans and marry a Korean woman if it’s possible. But OMG! I’m really scared!

    1. Tomi Oni says:

      Wow Abdul you are also a fan of their movies and Soap Operas? I am too and I am full blooded Naija! Krome!

      1. Tomi Oni says:

        I also intend to visit one day! I love their culture,constant show of respect, their appreciation of family and commitment to family! Its all so much like home in the Real Nigeria. Krome!

      2. EMMANUEL says:

        Hey Tomi, I’m Emmanuel. I’m also Nigerian, I love korea their culture, food, culture, its beautiful village. I no dey look face my guy, as a rich Nigerian once I step off the plane, I go dey drip withy afro hairstyle, I go wear correct Ankara with Pride. Don’t give in to the psychology effects of racism. The earth is the Lord’s and the fullest thereof.

    2. Summer Splash says:

      Dont be,just be confident of how you are,am also nigerian but i love south korea and i dont care of what they think of me

    3. Esther says:

      OMG😃
      We from the same country….and we have the same wish😊
      I also dream of getting married to a Korean man someday….. hopefully…

    4. Fatima Modu Gana says:

      I’m a nigerian too! I love korea so much I can’t Even explain it. The love i have for the kpop idols and kdrama actors makes me love all korean people and korean culture. My dream is to move to korea and work there and also go to fansigns.

      1. Alisha says:

        I love kpop idols as well! I’m just afraid that they won’t accept me as a fan because of my skin color, im african american ( i’m black), im from miami, in miami, we have a lot of black and white people, its easy for me to make friends with either black or white people, when i look at a white person, they just smile at me, i dont intentionally want to look at them I just look around and all of a sudden something about them catch my eye, when they smile at me; when they see me look at them, i just smile back like nothing happend, i personally think it’s a pleasant, if im not mistaken, a pleasant thing to do, white people in miami are very nice, but you’ll never know if their just pretending to be like that, but even so I’m very thankful to them for doing such a thing instead of saying mean things, i really hope that korean people can be just like them, i really, really wanna go to south korea one day, it is one of my top dreams…😊😊😊

      2. Augustus Dudu says:

        I’m a Nigerian also and I feel gratified to see other people just like me who wish to visit Korea despite what we’ve heard😁😁.

  63. Angel says:

    Oh hello please I dream of going to the country and I have learnt that racism is not really practiced there which is good, I am still very young and I still have the strong will of going there.

    1. Angel says:

      O my goodness, we have the same name and we both have the same thoughts, I really want to go to college there and develop a lifestyle but I’m too scared.

      1. Angel says:

        Me tooo.

  64. Dorcas says:

    well, I have recently come to love south korea. I have come to love there food, fashion, technology and I think they are very talented. More so I have been curious of what its like in South Korea also in terms of job opportunities because one day I would like to visit. I hope that if one day I get to really go there, it shall be positive. I believe we are all human beings, flesh and blood. We should treat each other with love and respect.

    1. Ewaia Victoria says:

      I am a Nigerian ,I also love South Korea I love they movies and I love to travel to that place someday.

      1. Stephanie says:

        I am also a black girl I am a Ghanaian I would love to go there is my dream country but I don’t know what they would say about my colour cause I am black

  65. marvelous daly says:

    hey, i am a Nigerian. i have loved south korea and korean people since i was a little girl. i have never been there but i dream to visit that country someday. from my point of view, korea has a very minimal racist level and they look like really nice people. there are black people just like us you live there and love it..

    1. Wong Jing Paul says:

      I am a Malaysian currently studying in South Korea. I have been here for more than 3 years, and i have to tell you that most of the korean have are afraid of foreigners, as they are afraid they can’t communication with you or they just not want to get out from their comfort zone to mingle around with people other than their own race.

      1. Prudence says:

        Thank you for sharing, would you recommend one to study there based on your experience with them? I’m considering applying there but I’m afraid they may be racist

      2. Tara says:

        Hello, I’d like to get in touch with you. How do I contact you?

    2. Nana Afriyie. says:

      Hey! Am from Ghana and I love to visit korea one day because is my dream country since ever I learned to know them better. I love their culture, and movies and also their music( k popo). But sometimes I think of what would it be like to be the only black walking down the street in the morning with only white people around me and starring at me . sometimes I really get scared but I hope that would not be the case when I visit there.

  66. M says:

    I read the article and I was happy to find it. I also watched your video. Thank you for sharing your experience.

    I am a Black man from America. I studied mechanical engineering. Currently I work in software. Specifically I have skills in automated testing and automotive mechanics.

    Since I work in software, I was imagining I could work in Korea, so long as I had internet. How realistic is it for me to find software work? Here where I live it is easy if you have the skills. Officially I have an associates degree and 5+ years software work experience.

    I’ve heard Seoul is extremely vain, and selfies may be submitted with resumes. They wont hire you if they think youre ugly. Is that true? seems harsh.

    As far as generally existing – I have dreadlocks down to my shoulders. I’m 6ft, 195lbs (183cm, 88kg) with a mesomorph body type. I am nicely muscular and I’ve been solicited to, for modeling. (I am not bragging, ive been told i am attractive for years by many people from different backgrounds)

    Which makes me expect a lot of attention if I were to move there

    I like fast/loud cars. 3D printing and CAD design. Martial arts, Biking, playing Gears of war on xbox, and working out at a gym. How likely is it i can maintain the things I like? – Probably depends on my income? Because me opening a shop to build/engineer things is a dream.

    I still need to learn korean. I strongly worry about that difficulty and not knowing would compound the racism there lol

    Because racism is quite common here and I am OVER IT – i’ve noticed some white men are just scared/intimidated and insecure within their own hearts and some of those men project their fears and expectations on to me. Which can lead to a negative interaction. (maybe it is a human male thing, but ugh it happens so often).

    How is it interacting with Korean men? Because in my elementary, junior high, and high school and college, I noticed a common denominator with mean kids. Would-be bullies could be nasty-racist behind my back, but never blatantly to my face. I am an anti-bully. I googled stuff and I will be physically larger than most of the average locals. So I wonder if I should expect a lot of deeply passive-aggressive racism with Korean men/women?

    I have a half-korean girlfriend who’s mother side of the family lives there. So we would have some sort of backup, but I would rather have my own space because the family who ive never personally met might be racist too lol. How easy is it to find property?

    I noticed hotels that were like 30-50 US_dollars a day, and for around $2,100 usd I could fly there, stay for nearly and month, check out the city and make a decision?

    I am not leaving america to escape from anything. I know racism exists all over the world. I only want to go to Korea because it would mean the world to my half korean girlfriend who lived in korea as a child. shes 28 now, (im 29) and weve been together for 6 years. she wants to live there for at least a year.

    Ive traveled over seas to VISIT parts of the Caribbean, the UAE, Ghana and South Africa. I welcome the culture shock but I feel like I might actually miss america? but not at the same time
    Thanks for reading!

    TLDR: Considering moving to Korea because of a longterm relationship. I currently work in software, How hard is life is going to be in South Korea for a smart, tall, and fit black male who’s spouse is half korean?

    1. Jace says:

      Well not to say it’s gonna be easy but a good experience

  67. Rukia says:

    Rukia
    Am from Uganda it has been always my dream and will always be my dream to go to South Korea and have my studies but my greatest fears were the way they will treat me while in Korea

  68. cara says:

    hello, i’m half jamaican and half british and i’ve always wanted to be able to go to somewhere in Seoul and have my own bakery but I guess i’m just kind of scared to start somewhere new and learn a new language. I am young now but any encouragement or advice..?

    1. L says:

      Nothing to lose, besides a bit money :D. But in all seriousness, if you feel strongly about this, go for it. Better to go for it now than regret later. And remember, you only live one life 🙂

      1. J.J says:

        I’ll just say go with how you feel if its what you want don’t let your fear make you decide i know learning the people and something new is pretty hard and stressful but you have to sacrifice anything if its worth it ,at start it might be rough but things will turn around.Just make your best choice and let it ride.

        1. ANGEL says:

          you just inspired me so much

  69. Precious says:

    I am really happy about this…… So, is it necessary to learn the language fully? I am a Nigerian girl and I need a fellow black person to support me

    1. Pearl says:

      I’m with you my friend. I’m Nigerian too and gosh i love Korea. We are on the same page. Its not necessary to learn the language fully. Just learn the basics and when you move there,you get more knowledge…

    2. Peace says:

      Let’s learn together, precious. I love the language so much and I believe using the language to interact with someone on daily basis is the fast way to succeed

    3. Celestina says:

      Hi, I am also from Nigeria too I also love Korea too. Perhaps can we study the language together? Can I have your fb username so we could learn together

      1. Monica says:

        Hey
        I’m Nigerian too, I also wish to study in south Korea and it would be nice to have someone to share this journey with.
        My number WhatsApp number is 09025700026

  70. Beemnet awoke says:

    Hi, I’m Beemnet and I’m a black girl that is in love with koeea.
    I have an aunt and uncle that lives in south Korea but my aunt said that its bad here.
    My uncle told me that he applied to be a teacher but they failed him and when he asked why, they said that many parents and students don’t want black teachers. Is that true?
    Did many parents hate black peoples? 😔😢

  71. Destiny says:

    I am Nigerian ,i really wish to play professional football in South Korea someday.But i don’t know much about the country,if there is anything like racism being practiced there,someone should please enlighten me

  72. Oreva says:

    Ok so am Nigerian and I really think it will be a great experience visiting Korea and perhaps study there like seriously they have one the best medicine schools and it’s been my dream any Korean out there to talk to please email me orevautehwe@gmail.com I am serious

    1. Dajin John says:

      Am a Nigerian and would really like to practice medicine at South Korea. What do you think?

      1. Muna says:

        I think that is great, i also want to study medicine in south korea.

  73. Pepuna says:

    Can somebody tells me if South Koreans are interested in learning French?
    I also want to visit that beautiful country

  74. Mylene says:

    Hi i’m french and i want to go study in korea but i don’t know
    if with a student visa you can study Korean and study for a job in Korea at the same time?

  75. Shermain says:

    Hi, I loved your article. I’ve been looking for kindergarten schools to work at recently and I’ve had some korean co workers tell me, “Be careful because korean principals usually want white teachers, not black.” All I could was nod and try to keep a blank face.

  76. Habeeba says:

    Hi
    I’m a black girl from Ghana and I have always loved everything about Koreans but I have always wanted to know what it feels like to be in South Korea.
    More precisely being a black.
    I want to know what most Koreans think about blacks.

    1. Destiny says:

      여보세요 (hello in korean)
      I have always wanted to move to South Korea because I’ve always admired Koreans especially because of their beautiful features. So I wanted to know what it would be like if I moved there because I am Native American. In the future I hope I marry someone Korean, Asian, or Cambodian. (A lot of them are cute and these people are apparently my type. They are the only type of people that appeal to me. This might cause me to be single as a Pringle for the rest of my life)
      P.S. I don’t know Korean yet, but Korean is one of the easiest languages to learn.

    2. 정환 says:

      I’m a student living in Korea. To be honest, there are quite a lot of older people who are still racist.

      1. Bianca Amor says:

        Maybe probably they think we are not cute sensitive and normal humans i don’t really know how to speak their language i just want to school there thats why i want to know if they are okey with black people 🙄🙄🙄i do travel to other places there is nothing like unwanted discrimination am very happy
        Cause u made my day wit ur experience and also another stuff i fear is their food i mean we don’t eat same stuff so how did you cope with it i really wanna learn your language

    3. Angel says:

      Hey I’m also a Ghanian girl and I really want to pursue my education in South Korea.

  77. Melissa says:

    My name is Melissa and i am a black girl from South Africa. I have been in South Korea now for 1 month (i arrived on the 16th of August.2019) and i am loving it so far. It was abit scary at first but i have to admit i am one strong person, i don’t let ugly stares break my spirit because i believe ignorance is a choice & if you choose to be ignorant that’s on you. I have had wonderful people come up to me and ask me where i am from etc…and others who stare with abit of shock i don’t mind, do you honey and i’ma do me. So long as i know that i am in your country legally and i am not here to break the law i’m good. I am teaching English here and if you ask me we all need each other. I have heard some Korean kids telling me that them learning english will enable them to go study in America and in the UK. So there is really no need for rude people. We are all helping each other out. It also helps if you are a teacher and you have a good agent and my agent Julie she is very caring, prompt and reliable so it makes life bearable. When i first arrived i didn’t have any friends but i have since met 3 American white guys who are extremely kind and fun to be around so those are my friends in this country. I have also met some Korean girls and boys who i hangout with they are very open minded, kind and definatly not racist. We call ourselves the English squad and our Korean friends say we help them alot because they want to improve their English. I live in Iksan City Jeollabuk-do province. Here is my whatsapp number if you are also around SK +27 784 862 133 hit me up and let’s make life easier for one another since we are far from home. My Kakao id is MelissaZar. Ps. I also do understand those Koreans who have not seen a black person in their life, i fully understand but be open don’t be rude to people. Huge gratitude to those who aren’t rude because in South Africa we also have a huge chinese community and we don’t treat them with disrespect.

    1. Claudine says:

      I’m South African too🤩I want to study in South Korea and I was always scared I would be blasted with harsh comments but you showed me what I needed to see thank you 🌸

  78. LaKisha says:

    Thank you Anyssa, I want to visit South Korea but was worried how I would be accepted as a black women in a country that prefers lighter skin tone. I am now more motivated to take the trip and feel that it won’t be more scary than living in Ohio. There are many racist areas here, mostly in the country/farm areas.

  79. Levy Quento says:

    Am also planning to come and stay in South Korea. How is life and are jobs easy accessed for foreigners. Am born and raised in Africa. Someone to kindly advise.

  80. Augustus Tarty says:

    I’m a Liberian, from Monrovia Liberia, my Country have a free visa on arrival in South Korera, but I’m so afraid about how who to speak with or speak to when I get to south Korea , because I have no relatives, Friends and anyone that I know in South Korea, so I left Liberia and I’m having in Abuja Nigeria right now, but my dream is for me to still travel to south Korea, so believed Dear Friends, Koreans, and especially Black African that are living in south Korea, here is my WhatsApp phone number, +2347033115066, my Instagram page is Sytekonfashion, my Facebook name is Prince Augustus Tarty, please I need a Friend in South Korea, that will inform me about some very important things about south Korea OK,

  81. Natascha says:

    My country does not appear on countries eligible to teach in South Korea, does this mean I don’t stand a chance to teach English?

    1. Sara Thacker says:

      Hi Natascha,

      Unfortunately, those are the countries from which the E2 visa is awarded, which you need to legally work in Korea. If you want to teach elsewhere we can help, email us at travelabroad@greenheart.org!

  82. naisha says:

    while i havent visited south Korea yet, i have known some south koreans. while i dont know if they way a person acts here in the U.S. is the same way they’d act in there own counrty i have had positive experiences . Actually my best friend in college was a boy “Jay Woo” from south korea. I learned so much about the country that we aren’t taught here and, so much about his experience with other south koreans born here in the U.S. Now we did have some “so so” experiences people looking as us weird and black guys making jokes and even where he toke some lip from other koreans for hanging out with a black girl but no one ever said anything to me.I personally feel like the same type of things would happen in south korea too and, it not that big of a deal to me. Nevertheless he never stopped hanging with me and although he was shy and even more shy about his english i can say that he and others i’ve met have made me want to visit. I can say for sure it is better to go with or know a korean person out there, or make friends quickly. there are in fact a lot of gangs (mostly students) who don’t minds starting trouble in certain areas. for those of you who don’t speak korean best you start practicing and learning some key word especially from that refer black or foreign people/ person or negative remarks so that you are better aware of your surroundings but thats with any foreign country where you don’t speak the language . Again this is my opinion and no i haven’t personally went yet. i would be open to getting group together to go , so if any one is interested on making that happen my ig is below.
    Natural_ten

    1. ㄹ엣 says:

      I know there is a lot of racism in South Korea but I won’t give Up my dream I am moving to South Korea after we are done fighting the corona

  83. Amal says:

    I don’t think the right word is “trying not to be racist” it’s act on it. But as the time will pass and has past. I think now there are people more accepting and acknowledging about foreigner and and people from all races. I don’t live in korea but someday I want i just wanna move and live there and share my opinion and that “korean are racism” everywhere in the media we can make scrap that. So that people who wanna follow there dreams like me won’t have to hesitate and research research research.
    To everyone wondering should I go there,
    I did the same thing search everything. Will korea be safe for me? Oh will i ever make friends? Or will I be lonely forever and ever? Will I find an Oppa oh
    Dramaqueen 🙄
    Now I’m gonna tell you 1 thing you are reading other people’s experiences not yours, cuz yours is not theirs cuz yours is goin’ to be different. Remember that Ok!
    Now Peace to everyone enjoy life l Sure do ✌🏽🤪

  84. Qwertty says:

    I’m south korean and my opinion can’t represent all korean, but It seemed that you guys need some help or imformation. It was unusual to see foreigners in our country since a long time ago because of its geographical and historical reasons. So when we see foreigner, it is kind of interesting and new even just seeing them just because it is not usual, and we get curious about them but this curiosity often is in a positive manner. Lots of people around the world now is coming to Korea so it is less severe than past, but the population mainly is focused on cities, usually Seoul. And people’s tendency is not something that can change so fast. What I want to say is that we don’t generally differenciate and judge people with their skin colors. Some may, but at least for me and for people around me, we will try as hard as we can not to be racists. And we even know that it’s one of the most controversial issues.

    1. Ange says:

      I would agree with you. There are some that can be, some are not. Depending on how they look at you. Even here in the Philippines, we sometimes are curious on the looks of the foreign tourists. We also admired people with white complexity. But at the end of the day, it is still how you carry yourself, whether you’re black, you’re white and etc.

    2. Divine Newyear says:

      Am a Nigerian one of the Africa country I want to learn how to speak Korean. I love Korean so much and it my dream country please can you help me out

      1. Oreva says:

        Same here maybe we could team up I d love to learn the language and study Derek maybe we could team up kindly email me orevautehwe@gmail.com

    3. Sylvia says:

      Aaaaw ur sooo
      sweet

  85. S. Christian Berry says:

    My daughter loves the culture and for her 21st birthday this December I’m planning a trip for us. Any tip you can offer?

    1. Faith says:

      Am faith,am a Nigerian,I would love to go to South Korea one day,especially Seoul,I love singing,i watched so many Korean movies ,I love it when park shin hye sings too,I love her and so many Korean actors too,I would love to be a Korean actress and singer too though am black too,but when I watched moorim school(Korean movie),I saw this guy,he is black in complexion ,he was also in that movie,then I saw that being black doesn’t mean anything,I love singing,I would love to go to South Korea one day,it’s my dream place(Seoul)

  86. Hydra says:

    Many people in South Korea haven’t seen a black person In real life, hence the looks. Most Asian countries aren’t a melting pot like the West.. And btw, Koreans have their OWN standards of beauty…. Japan and South Korea have preferred pale skin since antiquity….

  87. Yahaira says:

    I want to go and study in South Korea for my high school years. But I do not know if I could. Of if it was a good idea. I’m not from African decent but I am Latina.
    Any advice???

  88. Steve says:

    I need a job here in south Korea

  89. Zoe Dube says:

    This is really an eye opener because I also want to move to south Korea but I’m wasn’t sure about how people will act round me since I’m a black girl…. And south african
    Thank u

    1. Yamkela says:

      I’m two days in and absolutely hating it. It may be that I’m having separation anxiety from my husband (we are in two different cities) or that everyone stares, all the time. It’s a huge adjustment for someone from South Africa. My one friend lasted 3 months and then left. I don’t know if I’ll be staying for long, I’m giving myself a month to see, but I can tell you this. If you come, come mentally prepared and open-minded. Also, if you have a friend or someone also keen to come, come with them. It’s easier to navigate Korea with someone else.

      1. Enough says:

        Yamkela, am with you on this. We need to have a proper study on the countries that we want to go work in as some countries are racists towards people from Africa.

    2. Lesley Goueri says:

      Hi, we in May 2019, did you go to Korea?

    3. Christine says:

      I’m a Korean American teen girl, who is currently living in Korea. I was born in America, so I have both experiences of living in america and korea…and I can clearly see the difference between the two. First of all, I apologize for how the man treated you..that wasn’t necessary at all, and the people who just watched the whole scene. I do love and support korea, but I’m really not happy about the racism here. That’s one thing I hope would decrease sooner. There are a couple of people who gave up on living in korea because of the mistreatment they had in where they lived, thinking Korea is racist. But you were the opposite! You stayed strong and didn’t let yourself lose confidence easily. And I thank you so much for that. I just wish people wouldn’t think that Korea is overall a racist country because of the mistreatment they got by some close-minded people. Some Koreans are like this because they’re not familiar with non-koreans in their country, mostly due to Korean history, which is sad. Other countries like America have less racism compared to Korea, since they had more immigrants and foreigners involved. The way the students approached you is actually hilarious… can’t imagine how awkward it would’ve been! Unlike me, kids here have little knowledge about non-asians, since they usually only see them in movies or on the internet. Fortunately, Korean students today are putting effort and learning more about foreigners, how to respect and accept them. I really hope more people come into Korea and help wipe out this embarrassing existence of racialism.

      1. Jhee says:

        Well said

  90. Moon says:

    Man is always moved by what he hears and sees. With the experiences of others, one can decide on steps to take. Thus, my questions have always been “what is life in Korea all about?” job opportunities, treatment of of other race “Africans”, culture cum tradition,food and religion. Those are the key factors that one would think about before the idea of visiting South Korea matures. I would love to know more about how South Koreans accommodate other race and how it affects an individual from enjoying his stay. Thanks.

    1. Akhona says:

      I’m a black woman from South Africa and I’ve recently found my love for Korea. I would love to travel there and get to see the way they live, their culture and just basically the food. At the moment I’m still studying but reading this article has helped in easing my doubts and fears although they are still present but now I’m more definat with my decision and will still persue my dream

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