Date Culture

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Valentine’s Day and White Day in Korea, Japan, and America

14th February 2006

I arrived in Korea in late February, after celebrating Valentine’s Day in America. I soon learned about White Day, celebrated on March 14th in Korea. This is not a recognizable day in America, but in Korea White day is an important part of the cutlure. To celebrate White Day, men normally buy women candy and lucky men will take one special lady out to dinner. White Day is also celebrated in Japan.

On Valentine’s Day in Korea, women buy chocolate for men. On a Valentine’s Day date, the man might be expected to pay for dinner or the couple might split the bill. Like in Korea, in Japan, women normally buy chocolate for the men in their lives. In addition to buying chocolate for certain men, many Japanese women buy chocolate for themselves: “There’s been a trend the past two or three years for women to buy chocolates for themselves, as a sort of pat on the back for having worked hard,” said a Takashimaya department store spokeswoman

In the United States, men typically give cards, flowers, and or chocolates to women on Valentine’s Day. Cards often ask “Will you be my Valentine?”. An American man is expected to do something romantic for his wife or girlfriend.

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