Art and Performance

Benoit Symposium: Capitalist Dreams in the Communist Utopia: North Korea’s The Schoolgirl’s Diary

By | September 30, 2013

Engaging with a contemporary North Korean film, Sherri Ter Molen unpacks the usage of symbols derived from foreign–and what are often seen as hostile–sources within a distinctly North Korean cultural product.

Benoit Symposium: Writers in the DPRK: The Invisible Stars

By | September 27, 2013

The author of “Soldiers on the Cultural Front,” Tatiana Gabroussenko analyses the conundrum of literary production in North Korea, a cultural space seemingly reverential of the product but deliberately ambivalent, if not actively hostile, towards the producer.

Benoit Symposium: From Pyongyang to Mars: Sci-fi, Genre, and Literary Value in North Korea

By | September 25, 2013

History and the past are subjects close to North Korea’s institutional and cultural heart, but what about cultural expressions of the potential future. In this essay, Benoit Berthelier explores the science fiction output of Pyongyang.

Benoit Symposium: Practice and Praxis of Cultural Production in North Korea: A Virtual Symposium on Production, Authorship, and Tone

By | September 25, 2013

A scholar at INALCO (Institute National des Langues et Civilisations Orientales) in Paris, Benoit Berthelier has joined Dr. Robert Winstanley-Chesters to co-edit an expansive virtual symposium on aesthetic and cultural production in North Korea. To start things off, Berthelier offers an opening salvo in what promises to be a splendid ride.

“Still Quite Fun To Read:” An Introduction to North Korean Children’s Literature

By | September 17, 2013

Drawing from his own research on contemporary conceptions and experiences of childhood in North Korea, Christopher Richardson paints a primer on the content and significance of children’s literature in the DPRK.

Mass Games for a Mass Audience: Another Sign of Cultural Diplomacy?

By | July 25, 2013

With Seoul and Pyongyang both set to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the Korean Armistice Agreement, English- and Korean-language media pick up on different points of a similar theme. Is the DPRK reaching out to foreign audiences for its “Victory Day”?

The Korean Wave’s Northern Undertow: Cultural Hybridity and the Moranbong Band

By | June 25, 2013

Sherri L. Ter Molen examines the potential for the Moranbong Band, the North Korean all-girl musical performance group formed in 2012, to increase DPRK soft power by appealing to foreign audiences.

“Be Prepared!” Reflections On The North Korean Children’s Union

By | June 13, 2013

Looking at the structure, ritual, and uniforms at last week’s congress for the Korean Children’s Union (KCU), Christopher Richardson, doctoral candidate at the University of Sydney, delves into the renewed significance of the Children’s Union just as the nation marches onward in the second year under the young leader.