Korea and Japan have been occupied by the Americans since 1945 and to a large extent they have lost their culture and know this. China has kept its culture and has retained the tea shops and Chinese traditions and not swapped them for the coffee and doughnuts culture of the other two.
Korea (or at least city Korea) is a lot cleaner than Japan or China.
I think Japan is totally different than China or Korea. While the Japanese language is similar to Korean, and has similar characters to Chinese I find that Japan is a world unto itself. It has so many different types of youth culture which obviously sets it apart from the uniform youth culture of Korea. All while maintain a strong respect for history and the past.
Korea was a part of Ancient China. I'm just assuming about japan, but I believe they were too at one point. Koreans and the Japanese later developed their own languages, and become tributary countries to China.
Korea has been in the shadow of Japan for the last few centuries, but has used Japan as a model to build their nation. Japan used the US in the same way since the 50's. As a result, Korea is very similar to Japan from 20 years ago.China is a different story. They basically dominated the world pre-British imperialism. They didn't receive the benefits of being colonized or controlled by Western powers (I'm going to get a lot of flack here, but my opinion is that Japan became the world power it is because of the American influence after WW2. Korea benefitted heavily (in terms of educational and political reform, infrastructure gains and business) from Japanese colonization. Similarly, Singapore and Hong Kong benefitted heavily from British colonization.)
do you know if there's a way to teach English in Japan that doesn't involve the JET program?
Drivers actually stop for red lights! And pedestrians! How novel! I don't have enough digits to count how many times I've nearly been killed on Korean streets.
Some background before I answer to add some legitimacy to my post. I'm Japanese-Canadian. I have an intermediate grasp of both Korean and Mandarin Chinese and speak Japanese pretty fluently. I studied for one summer in a Chinese university and traveled to most of the major cities and volunteered and lived in villages in the South and West. I've been living in Korea for 8.5 months and volunteered in the poorer areas of Seoul as well. I have also been to Japan about 8 times now, once to study as a child, but mostly as a tourist living in my relatives' houses.All three countries are xenophobic. It's really hard to generalize but if I had to...Caucasians or people from major economies (that are either Western or Japan) are received better.Chinese are definitely more comfortable with diversity. Their entire history revolves around the unification of tribes and minorities. You'd be surprised what Chinese people can look like if you go to villages or further away from the East coast. It may sound confusing but I'd have to say that Japanese people have a better tolerance of foreigners, but Chinese are inherently more accepting. I think Korea and Japan have a greater interest in the Western powers and English, but Japan has a more eclectic perspective. Koreans tend to identify themselves by comparing themselves to Japan, the US and to a lesser extent, the rest of Asia. Japan focuses a lot more on USA, China and Germany. Chinese people tend to compare themselves to other Chinese people (other cities or provinces). China really is like a conglomeration of many nations so it's totally different from Korea and Japan in that regard.I think a lot of the differences can be explained by the economic position of each nation. Japan is an established world power so it doesn't have the intense drive that Korea and China do to improve their economic positions. Chinese and Koreans HAVE to learn English and HAVE to compete with the rest of the world to make their mark. Japan is very complacent in many ways because of their success (the same thing can be said for all the established Western powers vs. their tier 2 neighbors).Korea has been in the shadow of Japan for the last few centuries, but has used Japan as a model to build their nation. Japan used the US in the same way since the 50's. As a result, Korea is very similar to Japan from 20 years ago.China is a different story. They basically dominated the world pre-British imperialism. They didn't receive the benefits of being colonized or controlled by Western powers (I'm going to get a lot of flack here, but my opinion is that Japan became the world power it is because of the American influence after WW2. Korea benefitted heavily (in terms of educational and political reform, infrastructure gains and business) from Japanese colonization. Similarly, Singapore and Hong Kong benefitted heavily from British colonization.)If you look at all three countries, they have a history of opening up to the world, then closing themselves off. Japan opened themselves up in the 70's to 90's and are starting to show signs of closing themselves off again. Korea is currently trying to open themselves up, but I can see them following in Japan's footsteps in a few decades. China is growing in a very different way. Their ascension is very unique. I can't really predict what will happen next. Liberal reform, fractionization, collapse? It's a tough call. So...I'm totally not answering the OP's question at this point, but I don't want to delete what I've written so I"m going to post it anyways.Favorite things from each country?China - the intense drive to live a better lifeKorea - the intense nationalism and prideJapan - the intense contrast (conservative fashion and downright absurd fashion; world leading high rise architecture and thousand year old temples; etc.)
I have been to all three and lived in China, Korea and Taiwan. I wrote this starters guide on teaching English in Asia. Maybe this will give you some ideas on the differences.
i asked a coteacher and he said that korea's the only country where the kids go to school all day and all night long.maybe your kids in other countries will have happier lives.