Merry Christmas – Is Christmas Any Different in Korea? Not Really…


Merry Christmas, all. I hope Santa brings you a Red Ryder BB gun.


As for a Korean Kristmas, there isn’t much difference. The holiday is not as big here. Korea is only about 20-25% Christian. And actually, the muted size of the festivities more appropriately matches Christmas’ relative importance (somewhat low) in the Christian calendar. As in the US, Christmas has been overtaken by commercialism. It’s all about tacky plastic decorations and the most decorations you see are in the stores, not in domiciles.

I was the only one to put up Christmas decorations in my office. I couldn’t find a live tree either – a crushing blow, that. All the Christmas specials you know aren’t on TV or at the DVD store. And about the only Christmas movies Koreans really like are the Home Alone films.

On a more serious, culture studies note, it might interest you to note that Santa is interpreted here as a Caucasian. The race of Jesus has been an issue of dispute occasionally – see the first few minutes of Ali for an sharp look at the impact of a white Jesus on the young Cassuis Clay. But there is not such tussle over Santa here.

1 thought on “Merry Christmas – Is Christmas Any Different in Korea? Not Really…

  1. Pingback: Happy Thanksgiving – Some Korean Humor – See You Next Week « Asian Security Blog

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