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Lesson 106: Listing Possibilities/Outcomes: ~든지 (간에)

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Vocabulary
Introduction

Listing Out Possibilities/Outcomes: ~든지 (간에)
Words that ~든지 is commonly attached to

 

 

Vocabulary

Nouns:
뱃속 = inside a stomach
수두 = chicken pox
보물 = treasure
절망 = despair/hopelessness
정오 = noon
해돋이 = a sunrise
야식 = nighttime snack
명함 = business card
화산 = volcano
범위 = range/scope of something
실감 = a realistic feeling
분자 = molecule
멀미 = motion sickness
중동 = the Middle East
차멀미 = motion sickness from a car (car sick)
물놀이= playing in the water
비극적 = tragic
객관적 = objective

Verbs:
솟다 = to soar/rise up
분리하다 = to separate/divide/segregate
탐험하다 = to explore
환전하다 = to exchange money/currency
유통하다 = to circulate, to ventilate

Adjectives
유익하다 = to be beneficial, useful, helpful
엄청나다 = to be enormous, to be tremendous

Adverbs and Other Words:
아무튼 = anyways, in any event
어차피 = anyways, in any event

 

 

Introduction

In this lesson, you will learn how to add ~든지 to the end of a clause. Although this grammatical principle has a fairly straightforward meaning across the board, it can be used in a bunch of different ways. Let’s get started!

 

 

Listing Out Possibilities or Outcomes: ~든지 (간에)

The general umbrella explanation of how this particle can be used is when one wants to indicate that there are many possibilities or outcomes that can occur. ~든지 is added to the possibilities/outcomes that could occur, and the following clause is not a selection of one of those possibilities (like ~중에), but rather either of them could occur or be correct.

The translation is usually something like “whether A, or whether B….”, or “It doesn’t matter if A, or B…”. As usual, it is fairly difficult to describe this in words, but easier once we have seen examples. So let’s look at one:

포크를 사용하든지 젓가락을 사용하든지 더 편한 것을 사용하세요
= It doesn’t matter if you use a fork or use chopsticks, use the one that is more comfortable, or,
= Whether you use a fork or chopsticks, use the one that is more comfortable

In this sentence, the two clauses that have ~든지 attached to them are:

포크를 사용하든지
젓가락을 사용하든지

The use of ~든지 at the end of those clauses indicates that they are both possible outcomes for the upcoming clause.

Let’s look at some more examples:

보물을 찾든지 못 찾든지 절망에 빠지면 안 돼요
= Whether we find the treasure or not, we can’t lose hope (fall into despair)

경기에서 이기든지 지든지 열심히 해야 됩니다
= It doesn’t matter if you win or lose the game, you should try hard

그 가수를 내일 만나든지 못 만나든지 곧 만난다는 것이 실감이 안 나요
= Whether I meet that singer tomorrow or not, it doesn’t feel real that I will meet her soon

유통기한이 지났든지 안 지났든지 어차피 먹어야 해요
= It doesn’t matter if the expiration date has passed or not, anyways you have to eat it

우리가 내일 가든지 내일모레 가든지 어차피 가야 돼요
= It doesn’t matter if we go tomorrow or the day after tomorrow, anyways, we have to go

그 규칙에 동의하든지 안 하든지 그 규칙을 따라야 돼요
= It doesn’t matter if you agree with the rule or not, you have to follow it

서울로 이사하든지 부산으로 이사하든지 집값은 똑같아요
= It doesn’t matter if I move to Seoul or if I move to Busan, the cost of housing is the same

자전거를 타든지 달리기를 하든지 그냥 마음대로 아무거나 해
= It doesn’t matter if you ride a bike or walk, just do anything you want

대학교에 진학하든지 진학하지 않든지 열심히 공부해야 돼요
= It doesn’t matter if you go to University or not, you need to study hard

결과가 우리가 예상한 것이든지 아니든지 우리는 결과를 발표할 것입니다
= It doesn’t matter if the results are what we expected or not, we are going to announce them

수영장에서 물놀이만 할 수 있으면 숙소가 좋든지 안 좋든지 애들은 신경 안 써요
= As long as you can swim, it doesn’t matter if the accommodation is good or not, the kids won’t care

뱃속에 아기가 자라고 있어서 차를 타 면 빨리 가든지 느리게 가든지 차멀미가 날 거예요
= I’m pregnant (have a baby in my belly), so if we go by car, it doesn’t matter if we go slow or fast, I am going to be car sick

콜롬버스 탐험에 대해 조사하든지 다른 주제에 대해 조사하든지 주제를 얼른 정해야 돼요
= Whether you investigate the adventures of Columbus or investigate a different subject, you need to choose/set your subject quickly

하와이에 가서 화산을 보러 가든지 해돋이를 보러가든지 제일 중요한 것은 안전하게 여행하는 거에요
= When you go to Hawaii, whether you go to see a volcano or go to see the sunrise, the most important thing is traveling safely

오랜만에 엄마가 해 준 음식을 먹을 거라서 맛있든지 맛이 없든지 먹고 나서 기운이 엄청나게 솟을 거예요
= I’m going to have food cooked by my mom for the first time in a while, so it doesn’t matter if it will be delicious or not, once I eat it I will be ecstatic

~든지 can be attached to any adjective, verb or 이다. Therefore, you often see it used with nouns, connected to 이다. If the noun that 이다 is attached to ends in a vowel, the 이 can merge with the stem and you don’t see it. For example:

밥이든지 피자든지 빨리 골라!
= It doesn’t matter if it is rice or pizza, but choose quickly!

수두든지 아니든지 병원에 꼭 가 봐야 돼요
= Whether it is chicken pox or not, you definitely need to go to the hospital

미국 돈이든지 캐나다 돈이든지 빨리 환전하자
= It doesn’t matter if it is American money or Canadian money, let’s convert it quickly (soon)

야구(이)든지 축구(이)든지 내일 정오에 하자
= It doesn’t matter if (we play) it is baseball or soccer, let’s play tomorrow at noon

Just by the nature of these types of sentences, it is common for the end of the sentence to have the expression “I don’t care” or something similar. For example:

우리가 가든지 안 가든지 나는 신경을 안 써
= I don’t care if we go or not

The Hanja character 간 () means “between” and is a good word/character to know because it comes up a lot in Korean when referring to the relationship or interactions between things. For example:

부부지간 = between husband and wife
부모 자식 간 = between parents and children
분자간 힘 = the force between molecules (intermolecular force)

I can’t imagine when you would use that last one in your daily life, but I’m a chemistry teacher and I use it a lot.

It is common to use 간에 after the final ~든지 in sentences. Technically 간에 could be added to any of the examples above (from the very beginning of the lesson until now). However, adding this in the sentence sometimes adds a slight negative connotation to it (the only reason I say “sometimes” is because languages are very complex and it’s possible that it won’t have this negative feeling – but more times than not it will). Because of this, it is a little bit more common to find “간에” used after “~든지” when the speaker doesn’t care about the outcome. For example:

우리가 내일 가든지 내일모레 가든지 간에 어차피 가야 돼요
= It doesn’t matter if we go tomorrow or the day after tomorrow, anyways, we have to go

But note that the following are all acceptable, and adding “간에” makes the feeling slightly more negative if the situation allows for it.

포크를 사용하든지 젓가락을 사용하든지 간에 더 편한 것을 사용하세요

= It doesn’t matter if you use a fork or use chopsticks, use/choose the one that is more comfortable (whether you use a fork or chopsticks…)

경기에서 이기든지 지든지 간에 열심히 해야 됩니다
= It doesn’t matter if you win or lose the game, you should try hard (whether you win or lose…)

In all of the situations described so far, there were two different words that ~든지 was connected to in a sentence. This doesn’t always have to be the case, as the situation of the sentence can describe that something must be done among a choice of other things. For example:

네가 내일 무엇을 하든지 간에 밖에 나가야 돼
= It doesn’t matter what you do tomorrow, but you have to go outside

Often the outcomes/possibilities are an action or not doing that action. This is often accomplished by using ~든지 말든지. For example:

우리가 가든지 말든지 나는 신경을 안 써
= I don’t care if we go or not

시험이 있든지 말든지 간에 학교에 가야 돼요
= It doesn’t matter if there is an exam or not, you have to go to school

쓰레기를 분리하든지 말든지 재활용 차가 와서 수거해 갈 거에요
= It doesn’t matter if we separate the garbage or not, the garbage/recycling truck is going to come and take it away

이 범위를 공부를 하든지 말든지 여기서 시험문제가 나올 거예요
= It doesn’t matter if you study this area/part of content, there will be an exam question from this part

제가 야식을 먹든지 말든지 이미 저녁을 많이 먹어서 살이 찔 것 같아요
= It doesn’t matter if I eat at night or not, I’ve already eaten a lot of dinner so I’m going to gain weight anyways

그 사람한테 명함을 주든지 말든지 그 사람이 이미 제 연락처를 가지고 있어서 상관 없어요
= It doesn’t matter if I give my business card to that person or not, he already has my contact

 

 

Words that ~든지 is commonly attached to

Allow me to introduce a few words that you will commonly find ~든지 attached to.

It is common to find ~든지 attached to the common question words 뭐, 누구, 언제 and 어디. Some people learn these constructions as actual words and not as words connected to ~든지 but the end result is the same. You can see the meaning of each construction next to each example below, but the general meaning is “It doesn’t matter who/what/when/where.” For example:

뭐든지 = Whatever /It doesn’t matter what
한 달 동안 뭐든지 먹어도 돼요
= For one month, you are allowed to eat whatever you want (for one month, it doesn’t matter what you eat)

누구든지 = Whoever/It doesn’t matter who
누구든지 사람들이 믿을 수 있는 친구가 필요해요
= It doesn’t matter who it is, people need a friend they can trust (everybody needs a friend they can trust)

언제든지 = Whenever/It doesn’t matter when
우리 집에 언제든지 오세요
= It doesn’t matter when you come to our house (come to our house anytime!)

어디든지 = Wherever/It doesn’t matter where
어디든지 앉아도 돼요
= Sit anywhere! (It doesn’t matter where you sit)

벌어지다 is often used to indicate that there is some sort of space or gap between two things. For example:

우리 아버지가 앞니 사이가 벌어져 있어요 = Our dad has a gap in his front teeth
가방에 크게 벌어져 있는 구멍이 있어요 = There is a big hole in my bag

Another meaning of 벌어지다 is similar to 생기다 or 일어나다, where it indicates that something arises. For example:

어떤 일이 벌어졌어요? = What came up?
중동에서 전쟁이 벌어졌어요 = A war started/came up in the Middle East

~든지 is commonly attached to 벌어지다 in this usage. It is often preceded by 무슨 일이… to create the meaning of “whatever happens/regardless of what happens.” For example:

무슨 일이 벌어지든지 간에 그녀랑 결혼할 거예요
= Regardless of what happens, I’m marrying her

무슨 일이 벌어지든지 간에 이 문제를 객관적으로 해결해야 돼요
= Regardless of what happens, we need to solve this problem objectively

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Three notes about ~든지 before we finish:

  • In all of the example sentences in this lesson, it is acceptable to eliminate from ~든지 (간에).
  • ~던지, a grammatical principle that has not been introduced in this course yet, is often confused with ~든지. Sometimes even Korean people confuse them.
  • Remember that ~든지 can also be used in sentences with 상관없다 – which you learned about in Lesson 74. For example:

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
운전면허를 언제 받든지 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter when you get your driver’s license
학생들이 어떻게 반응하든지 상관없어요 = It doesn’t matter how the students react
네가 배고프든지 상관없어 = It doesn’t matter if you are hungry
우리는 거기에 가든지 말든지 상관없어 = It doesn’t matter if we go there
그게 비싸든지 말든지 상관없어 = It doesn’t matter if it is expensive

That’s it for this lesson!

 

That’s it for this lesson!

Click here for a Workbook to go along with this lesson.

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