Lesson 74: It doesn’t matter/ Regardless of (상관없다/상관없이)

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Vocabulary
Introduction

It doesn’t matter if…: 상관없다
Regardless of….:  상관없이
Despite: ~ㅁ/음에 불구하고

 

Vocabulary

Nouns:
= luck
= luggage, load, baggage
부상자 = an injured person, a person who suffers a loss
통증 = pain, ache
소화 = digestion
소화기관 = digestive organs
담요 = blanket
굵기 = thickness
식물 = plants
할인 = discount
맨발 = bare foot
광야 = wild-open wilderness
시골 = countryside
학점 = school credit
운전면허 = driver’s license
시련 = some sort of ordeal, hardship, problem
원산지 = the place where a product comes from
국적 = nationality

Verbs:
뒤집다 = to turn over, to turn inside out
열광하다 = to act enthusiastic about
반응하다= to react
가출하다 = to run away from home
표기하다 = to write, to mark

Passive Verbs:
차이다 = to be broken up with, to get kicked
표기되다 = to be written on

Adjectives:
상관없다 = to be irrelevant
붓다 = to be swollen
굵다 = to be thick
불량하다 = to be faulty, to be poor

Adverbs and other words:
상관없이 = regardless

For help memorizing these words, try using our Memrise tool.

 

 Introduction

In this lesson, you will learn how to use the word “상관없다” in sentences, both as a word that can be placed at the end of a sentence (like any other verb/adjective) and as an adverb than can be placed in the middle of a sentence. In order to use this word, you will draw from previous grammatical principles that you have learned in previous lessons (~는지, 아/어도), and learn a new one as well (~든). Let’s get started.

 

 

It doesn’t matter if…: 상관없다

The word “상관” literally translates to “relation,” and by saying “상관없다,” you are in a way indicating that there is no relation between two things. The most common way you will see/hear this being used is by itself to indicate that something “doesn’t matter” or “is irrelevant.” For example:

Person 1: 내일 언제 가고 싶어요? = When do you want to go tomorrow?
Person 2: 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter/I don’t care

Person 1: 짐을 어디에 둬야 돼요? = Where should I put the/my luggage?
Person 2: 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter/I don’t care

상관없다 can be used to predicate a sentence to say things like:

It doesn’t matter if you are hungry (it is irrelevant if you are hungry)
It doesn’t matter if we go there (it is irrelevant if we go there)
It doesn’t matter if it is expensive (it is irrelevant if it is expensive)

When predicating a sentence with 상관없다, it is common to attach “~아/어도” (which you learned about in Lesson 49) to the clause that is “irrelevant.” For example:

네가 배고파도 상관없어 = It doesn’t matter if you are hungry
우리는 거기에 가도 상관없어 = It doesn’t matter if we go there
그게 비싸도 상관없어 = It doesn’t matter if it is expensive

Some more examples:

그것을 먹어도 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter if you eat that
발이 부어 있어도 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter if your foot is swollen
선물을 안 사도 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter if you don’t buy a present
할인을 안 받아도 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter if I don’t get a discount
시골에서 살아도 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter if I live in the countryside
맨발로 들어와도 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter if you come in barefoot
그 셔츠를 뒤집어 입어도 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter if you wear that shirt inside-out
고기 원산지를 표기하지 않아도 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter if you don’t mark where the meat comes from

There might be situations where you might want to include a question word to make the sentence a little bit more complex. For example, to say:

It doesn’t matter when we go
It doesn’t matter where we go
It doesn’t matter who I go with

If you want to use question words like this in your sentence, it is unnatural to attach ~아/어도 to the clause prior to 상관없다. One way you can do this is to use ~는지, which you learned about in Lesson 30. For example:

우리가 언제 갈지 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter when we go
우리가 어디 갈지 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter where we go
제가 누구랑 갈지 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter who I go with

Another option is to attach ~든지, which isn’t introduced as a grammatical principle until Lesson 106. There is no need to jump ahead to Lesson 106 at this point. I will mention ~든지 briefly here, but you will dive deep into the specific meaning of ~든지 in Lesson 106. When used to separate two clauses (as you will see in Lesson 106), it generally translates to “whether.” Forget about that for now, and just see how it can be used in this lesson with 상관없다.

The three sentences above can also be written like this:

우리가 언제 가든지 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter when we go
우리가 어디 가든지 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter where we go
제가 누구랑 가든지 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter who I go with

Other examples:

운전면허를 언제 받을지 상관없어요
운전면허를 언제 받든지 상관없어요
= It doesn’t matter when you get your driver’s license

학생들이 어떻게 반응할지 상관없어요
학생들이 어떻게 반응하든지 상관없어요
= It doesn’t matter how the students react

가출하면 광야를 빼고 제가 어디 갈지 상관없어요
가출하면 광야를 빼고 제가 어디 가든지 상관없어요
= When I run away from home, other than the wilderness, it doesn’t matter where I go

In Lesson 58 you learned about ~거나 and how it typically translates to “or.” That being said, I made a distinction between using ~거나 once in a sentence, and using it twice (I encourage you to go back and read this observation I made). It is common to add ~거나 to two options within a sentence and then followed by “상관없다.” The whole sentence can mean that it doesn’t matter if “one or the other” occurs. For example:

우리가 먹거나 안 먹거나 나는 상관없어
= It doesn’t matter to me if we eat or don’t eat

돈을 벌거나 잃거나 나는 상관없어
= It doesn’t matter to me if I earn money or lose it

내일 주식이 떨어지거나 오르거나 상관없어요
= It doesn’t matter if the stocks drop or go up tomorrow

담요를 주거나 따뜻한 잠옷을 주거나 상관없어요
= It doesn’t matter if you give me a blanket or warm pajamas

 

Regardless of….: 상관없이

You can use 상관없이 as an adverb to create the meaning of “regardless of…” The easiest and most common way this is done is by saying “regardless of (noun).” In order to do this, you should attach ~와/과/하고/랑/이랑 to the noun 상관없이 is placed before. For example:

추위와 상관없이 = regardless of the cold
날씨와 상관없이 = regardless of the weather
통증과 상관없이 = regardless of the pain
저의 건강과 상관없이 = regardless of my health
운과 상관없이 = regardless of luck
국적과 상관없이 = regardless of nationality

These compositions can then go into sentences. For example:

추위와 상관없이 저는 밖에 나갈 거예요
= Regardless of the cold, I am going outside

날씨와 상관없이 우리는 지금 가야 돼요
= Regardless of the weather, we need to go now

통증과 상관없이 곧 일어나야 될 거예요
= Regardless of the pain, you will have to get up soon

저의 건강과 상관없이 저의 여자 친구를 만나고 싶어요
= Regardless of my health, I want to meet my girlfriend

운과 상관없이 모든 것이 열심히 하면 잘 될 거에요
= Regardless of luck, everything will be fine if you try (do it) hard

국적과 상관없이 부상자들은 모두 동등하게 치료를 받아야 돼요
= Regardless of nationality, all injured people need to receive fair treatment

학생들의 불량한 태도와 상관없이 제가 선생님이라 수업을 계속 해야 돼요
= Regardless of the students’ bad attitude, I am a teacher, so I need to keep doing class

Whenever I learned a new grammatical principle or word, I always tried to apply it to complicated sentences. When I first learned about 상관없이, I tried to apply it to sentences like this:

– Regardless of how much money I have, I need to buy an expensive present for my girlfriend
– Regardless of how much you love me, I have to break up with you

Here, an entire clauses precedes 상관없이 – not just a noun. To translate this, it is possible to use ~는지 like the sentences with 상관없다. For example:

제가 돈을 얼마나 많이 가지고 있는지 상관없이 여자 친구를 위해 비싼 선물을 사야 돼요
= Regardless of how much money I have, I need to buy an expensive present for my girlfriend

네가 나를 얼마나 많이 사랑하는지 상관없이 나는 너랑 헤어져야 돼
= Regardless of how much you love me, I have to break up with you

You might be thinking here “what about if I use ~아/어도” or ~든지. The thing is, when you use ~아/어도 or ~든지 in the middle of two clauses, they themselves have the meaning of “regardless of” or “whether.” Therefore, including the adverb “상관없이” in a clause that is already separated by ~아/어도 or ~든지 is redundant. For example, the following sentences don’t need “상관없이” because this meaning is already implied:

네가 나를 얼마나 많이 사랑해도 나는 너랑 헤어져야 돼
= Regardless of how much you love me, I need to break up with you

네가 나를 사랑하든지 안 하든지 나는 너랑 헤어져야 돼
= Whether you love me a lot (or not), I need to break up with you

제가 음식을 많이 먹어도 살이 절대 안 쪄요
= Regardless of how much food I eat I never gain weight

제가 음식을 많이 먹든지 많이 안 먹든지 살이 절대 안 쪄요
= Whether I eat a lot of food (or not) I never gain weight

At this point, I would like to introduce you to another grammatical principle that is commonly (and naturally) used to have a similar meaning.

 

 

 

 

Despite: ~ㅁ/음에 불구하고

Another word that functions to have a similar meaning in sentences as 상관없다 is 불구하다. You will rarely see it by itself as it is almost exclusively used in the middle of sentences.

Just like 상관없다, it can be used after a simple noun. When it is used like this ~에도 is typically attached to the noun that precedes it. The typical translation for this in English is “despite” which can essentially be seen as the same as “regardless of.” The only distinction I can make (in meaning) is that ~에도 불구하고 is more likely to be used with some sort of difficult hardship – whereas 상관없다 is more likely to be used in any general situation. For example:

날씨와 상관없이 = Regardless of the weather
날씨에도 불구하고 = Despite the weather

통증과 상관없이 = Regardless of the pain
통증에도 불구하고 = Despite the pain

날씨에도 불구하고 경기를 직접 보는 팬들이 열광했어요
= The fans watching the game live were enthusiastic despite the weather

통증에도 불구하고 마취 없이 소화기관에 수술을 받았어요
= Despite the pain, he had surgery on his digestive organs without anesthesia

시련에도 불구하고 저는 그 일을 해냈어요
= I finished that work despite the hardship/problems

When used after a verb or adjective ~ㅁ/음 (which you learned about in Lesson 29) is used to change the verb or adjective into a noun. Following this, ~에도 is usually attached to the newly created noun. Also notice that the verb or adjective can be conjugated to the past tense before ~에도 is attached to it. For example:

그럼에도 불구하고 점수가 너무 낮아서 학점을 못 받아요
= In spite of that, you can’t get credit because your scores were too low

어제 여자 친구에게 차였음에도 불구하고 오늘 자신감이 있어요
= In spite of being broken up with (dumped) yesterday, I have a lot of confidence today

사고가 났음에도 불구하고 경기가 계속되었어요
= The game/match continued despite the accident that arose

Although common and useful, 불구하다 (and ~ㅁ/음에도 불구하다) is most commonly used in written Korean. It is not completely unreasonable to hear this or to say this, but you are more likely to see this in some form of writing.

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