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**Named one of the best books of 2015 by The Economist** Private Markets, Fashion Trends, Prison Camps, Dissenters and Defectors. North Korea is one of the most troubled societies on earth. The country's 24 million people live under a violent dictatorship led by a single family, which relentlessly pursues the development of nuclear arms, which periodically incites risky military clashes with the larger, richer, liberal South, and which forces each and every person to play a role in the "theater state" even as it pays little more than lip service to the wellbeing of the overwhelming majority. With this deeply anachronistic system eventually failed in the 1990s, it triggered a famine that decimated the countryside and obliterated the lives of many hundreds of thousands of people. However, it also changed life forever for those who survived. A lawless form of marketization came to replace the iron rice bowl of work in state companies, and the Orwellian mind control of the Korean Workers' Party was replaced for many by dreams of trade and profit. A new North Korea Society was born from the horrors of the era—one that is more susceptible to outside information than ever before with the advent of k-pop and video-carrying USB sticks. This is the North Korean society that is described in this book. In seven fascinating chapters, the authors explore what life is actually like in modern North Korea today for the ordinary "man and woman on the street." They interview experts and tap a broad variety of sources to bring a startling new insider's view of North Korean society—from members of Pyongyang's ruling families to defectors from different periods and regions, to diplomats and NGOs with years of experience in the country, to cross-border traders from neighboring China, and textual accounts appearing in English, Korean and Chinese sources. The resulting stories reveal the horror as well as the innovation and humor which abound in this fascinating country.
"In his new book, Ask a North Korean, Daniel Tudor—a former Economist journalist and current Korean beer entrepreneur— wants people to understand the true lives of everyday North Koreans. Using translated essays written by defectors, the book covers topics from politics to pornography." — The Boston Globe Understanding North Korean Through the Eyes of Defectors. The weekly column Ask A North Korean, published by NK News, invites readers from around the world to pose questions to North Korean defectors. Adapted from the long-running column, these fascinating interviews provide authentic firsthand testimonies about life in North Korea and what is really happening inside the "Hermit Kingdom." North Korean contributors to this book include: "Seong" who went to South Korea after dropping out during his final year of university. He is now training to be an elementary school teacher. "Kang" who left North Korea in 2005. He now lives in London, England. "Cheol" who was from South Hamgyeong in North Korea and is now a second-year university student in Seoul. "Park" worked and studied in Pyongyang before defecting to the U.S. in 2011. He is now studying at a U.S. college. Ask A North Korean sheds critical light on all aspects of North Korean politics and society and shows that, even in the world's most authoritarian regime, life goes on in ways that are very different from what outsiders may think.
North Korean Review is the first academic journal in North America or Europe to focus exclusively on North Korea. The purpose of NKR is to provide readers with an improved understanding of the country’s complexities and the threat it presents to global stability. International and interdisciplinary, NKR is a refereed journal published twice a year. Topics include culture, history, economics, business, religion, politics and international relations, among others.
This radical new approach to dealing with North Korea offers a refreshing perspective on an intransigent and deadly situation. Imagine you control a multi-billion dollar capital fund, and North Korea is an underperforming corporation. You see it is undervalued and want to take it over, but it is controlled by an old-fashioned board of directors—the Kim family and a small number of ultra elites—who will not negotiate a deal. In this regressive situation it is logical to offer its shareholders—the political and military elites, government managers and bureaucrats, and the general population—a higher price for their shares to convince them to overrule their board of directors. Stop North Korea! A Radical New Approach to the North Korea Standoff applies this basic scenario to a situation that has become dire, and for which a strong positive solution is crucial. This book shows how investment rather than constraint—the carrot rather than the stick—will not only deter the North Korea threat, but enhance the global community in ways perhaps unimagined in the past.
Rationality in the North Korean Regime explores the history of the Kim family, examining cases of provocations from the Korean War to the August 2015 land mine incident to assess the regime's rationality.
This new edition of Bradt's North Korea has been completely written from scratch and remains the only standalone guide to what is often regarded as the world's most secretive state, a place never far from media scrutiny but about which very little is actually known in the wider world. Detailed is everything you need to know for a successful visit, from the practicalities of how to get there and who to go with to cultural sensitivities and etiquette, safety, money and travelling around. Amongst the places covered are the supra-centrally planned showcase capital of Pyongyang; Panmunjom, where North meets South face-to-face inside the 4km-wide DMZ - the dividing line between two nations and one people; Kumgansan Tourist Resort, the chiefly South Korean-built resort offering fantastic hikes; and Paektusan, the highest peak in all of Korea and Manchuria. For the intrepid and open-minded traveller North Korea is a truly mesmerising destination with a rich past and fascinating contemporary history. Visitors today are immersing themselves in an unrivalled experience in what is seemingly the last country in the world not to have submitted to globalisation, the last country still clinging on to the 20th century experiment in communism that for all others crumbled away shortly after the collapse of the Berlin Wall. Outside of the showcase socialist paradise of Pyongyang, visitors will find stunning natural scenery, from beautiful coastline and beaches to spectacular mountains, such as legendary Paektusan. Whilst many hold the ill-conceived notion that a visit to North Korea may not be safe, the reality is that visitors are warmly welcomed and still considered more as 'guests of the state' than as mere tourists. Written by expert author Henry Marr, who first visited North Korea in 2005 and has since been back more than twenty times, Bradt's North Korea is an indispensable guide to understanding and getting to know one of the world's most curious destinations.
South Korea's amazing rise from the ashes: the inside story of an economic, political, and cultural phenomenon Long overshadowed by Japan and China, South Korea is a small country that happens to be one of the great national success stories of the postwar period. From a failed state with no democratic tradition, ruined and partitioned by war, and sapped by a half-century of colonial rule, South Korea transformed itself in just fifty years into an economic powerhouse and a democracy that serves as a model for other countries. With no natural resources and a tradition of authoritarian rule, Korea managed to accomplish a second Asian miracle. Daniel Tudor is a journalist who has lived in and written about Korea for almost a decade. In Korea: The Impossible Country, Tudor examines Korea's cultural foundations; the Korean character; the public sphere in politics, business, and the workplace as well as the family, dating, and marriage. In doing so, he touches on topics as diverse as shamanism, clan-ism, the dilemma posed by North Korea, the myths about doing business in Korea, the Koreans' renowned hard-partying ethos, and why the infatuation with learning English is now causing huge social problems. South Korea has undergone two miracles at once: economic development and complete democratization. The question now is, will it become as some see Japan, a rich yet aging society, devoid of energy and momentum? Or will the dynamism of Korean society and its willingness to change—as well as the opportunity it has now to welcome outsiders into its fold—enable it to experience a third miracle that will propel it into the ranks of the world's leading nations in terms of human culture, democracy, and wealth? More than just one journalist's account, Korea: The Impossible Country also draws on interviews with many of the people who made South Korea what it is today. These include: Choi Min-sik, the star of "Old Boy". Park Won-soon, Mayor of Seoul. Soyeon Yi, Korea's first astronaut Hong Myung-bo, legendary captain of Korea's 2002 FIFA World Cup team. Shin Joong-hyun, the 'Godfather of Korean Rock'. Ko Un, poet. Hong Seok-cheon, restaurateur, and the first Korean celebrity to 'come out'. And many more, including a former advisor to President Park Chung-hee; a Shaman priestess ('mudang'); the boss of Korea's largest matchmaking agency; a 'room salon' hostess; an architect; as well as chefs, musicians, academics, entrepreneurs, homemakers, and chaebol conglomerate employees.

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