North Korea: The Paranoid Peninsula: A Modern History, Second Edition

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Zed Books, Sep 15, 2007 - History - 334 pages
3 Reviews
This reissue of Paul French's acclaimed introduction to North Korea provides an up-to-the-minute overview of the politics, economics and history of the DPRK, with added chapters dealing with recent events. A new foreword examines why North Korea has not gone away as a country or as an issue and argues that an understanding of the country is more important now than ever. A new in-depth postscript offers analysis of recent years and why Pyongyang felt compelled to test a bomb.
 

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Provides a thorough overview of the history of one of the most fascinating states in modern politics. Not only do you gain insight into the mindset of the countries leadership and its people but you come out with an understanding of the hardship of those trapped under the DPRK's regime. I found it particularly interesting how the relationships between North Korea and its sponsor states, China and the USSR changed as those states underwent economic reform and total collapse in the case of the USSR.
A very informative, useful and easy read.
 

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great book. Tragic content. Tragic country. Written in a straightforward and readable style is reveals what the fall of the USSR, Cuban decay, and Chinese turning to the market reveal, socialism, carried to its logical conclusion lead to totalitarianism, an eventual cult of personality (think Cuba) and drudgery as all who stand out are cut down to size, the lowest common denominator. I am reminded that the average North Korean is nearly six inches shorter than the average South Korean, all achieved in less than fifty years of socialist utopianism.  

Contents

Beloved Leaders Brilliant
9
A Normal Day in Pyongyang
27
Leadership in North Korea
48
Command and Control
73
Food Famine and the Arduous March
115
Change and Regime Survival
138
A Case Study of Sinuiju
166
USDPRK Relations
185
Bluster Brinkmanship or Battle?
208
Military First
216
The Dream of Reunification
233
How Will the Story End?
257
The Worlds Most Dangerous Tripwire
272
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About the author (2007)

Paul French is the Chief China Representative of Access Asia, a market research and business intelligence company specialising in China and North Asia's economics and markets. He was educated in London and at the University of Glasgow. He is the co-author of One Billion Shoppers - Accessing Asia's Consuming Passions (1998) and author of Carl Crow - A Tough Old China Hand: The Life, Times, and Adventures of an American in Shanghai (2006). He lives in Shanghai.

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