North Korea

North Korea : Markets and Military Rule

3.78 (14 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

In this historically grounded, richly empirical study of social and economic transformation in North Korea, Hazel Smith evaluates the 'marketization from below' that followed the devastating famine of the early 1990s, estimated to be the cause of nearly one million fatalities. Smith shows how the end of the Cold War in Europe and the famine brought radical social change to all of North Korean society. This major new study analyses how marketization transformed the interests, expectations and values of the entire society, including Party members, the military, women and men, the young and the elderly. Smith shows how the daily life of North Koreans has become alienated from the daily pronouncements of the North Korean government. Challenging stereotypes of twenty-five million North Koreans as mere bystanders in history, Smith argues that North Koreans are 'neither victims nor villains' but active agents of their own destiny.show more

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Review quote

'Hazel Smith's data-driven tour de force convincingly demolishes the cartoonish image of North Korea held by most outsiders, including senior policymakers in the West.' Robert M. Hathaway, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington DC 'A timely and insightful analysis of the post-Cold War transformation of the North Korean society. This book challenges the stereotypes of many outside observers of North Korean affairs and provides important policy implications.' Yoon Young-Kwan, Seoul National University, and former Foreign Minister of Republic of Korea 'As an antidote to demonization the powerful impact of Hazel Smith's thought forces one to look at North Korea not as a pariah, but as a country struggling to pull itself out of international isolation.' Donald P. Gregg, former US Ambassador to South Korea and Chairman Emeritus of The Korea Society in New Yorkshow more

Table of contents

Introduction: North Korea: politics, economy and society; Part I. Jettisoning Caricatures: Understanding History; 1. Beyond the cliches; 2. National identity; Part II. The Rise and Fall of Kim Il Sungism: 3. Colonial occupation and the rise of Kim Il Sung; 4. War-fighting as state-building; 5. 'Socialism in our own style'; 6. Sisyphus as economic model; 7. Social stratification in the workers' state; 8. Famine and the end of Kim Il Sungism; Part III. Marketisation and Military Rule: 9. Marketisation from below; 10. Military rule from above; 11. The marketisation of well-being; 12. The marketisation of the social structure; 13. Going nuclear; 14. Strategic paralysis; 15. North Koreans as agents of change; Bibliography; Index.show more

About Hazel Smith

Hazel Smith is Director of the International Institute of Korean Studies at the University of Central Lancashire.show more

Rating details

14 ratings
3.78 out of 5 stars
5 14% (2)
4 57% (8)
3 21% (3)
2 7% (1)
1 0% (0)
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