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Ruth Ann Monti

In 100 Facts: North Korea in 100 Facts (Paperback)

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A fascinating, objective picture of one of the world's poorest but most high-profile countries, and the mysterious world of a third-generation military dictatorship. 'Great ideology creates great times.' Kim Jong-il (1942-2011) Where to start with this mysterious, sometimes terrifying country? Perhaps with some hard facts - which are notoriously difficult to come by. Ruth Ann Monti teases out the truth about this dictatorship to provide an illuminating insight into a society that might just as well be in outer space for most in the West. Did you know, for instance, that high school students are required to complete an 81-hour course on current leader Kim Jong-un? Or that everyone must wear a Kim badge at all times? Even Mao didn't demand that. How about the fact that Kim Jong-un's father and predecessor, Kim Jong-il, kidnapped two of South Korea's film industry giants and made seven films with them - including a Socialist version of Godzilla? The 100 facts don't all make grim reading: for instance, North Koreans like to relax with a favourite tipple - but make theirs from acorns. More importantly, in 2012 North Korean archaeologists discovered a unicorn lair... This book highlights the hidden reality and strange truths about this much-misunderstood country.

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A fascinating, objective picture of one of the world's poorest but most high-profile countries, and the mysterious world of a third-generation military dictatorship. 'Great ideology creates great times.' Kim Jong-il (1942-2011) Where to start with this mysterious, sometimes terrifying country? Perhaps with some hard facts - which are notoriously difficult to come by. Ruth Ann Monti teases out the truth about this dictatorship to provide an illuminating insight into a society that might just as well be in outer space for most in the West. Did you know, for instance, that high school students are required to complete an 81-hour course on current leader Kim Jong-un? Or that everyone must wear a Kim badge at all times? Even Mao didn't demand that. How about the fact that Kim Jong-un's father and predecessor, Kim Jong-il, kidnapped two of South Korea's film industry giants and made seven films with them - including a Socialist version of Godzilla? The 100 facts don't all make grim reading: for instance, North Koreans like to relax with a favourite tipple - but make theirs from acorns. More importantly, in 2012 North Korean archaeologists discovered a unicorn lair... This book highlights the hidden reality and strange truths about this much-misunderstood country.
Ruth Ann Monti teases out the facts about this dictatorship to provide an illuminating insight into a society that might just as well be in outer space for most in the West. Modern North Korea is based on an ideology Kim Il Sung developed and named Juche. According to North Korea’s official website, Juche means that “the masters of the revolution and construction are the masses of the people and that they are also the motive force of the revolution and construction.” But what this means in practice is that everything is designed to venerate Kim Il Sung and his heirs; even school math problems (“if x = Kim’s anti-Japanese fighters and y = the number of Japanese killed,” etc.). Virtually all music, stories, and artwork reflect Kim’s life and teachings. High school students complete an 81-hour course on Kim Jong Un. Only a select few men are allowed to shave part of their hair a la Kim. The 100 facts don't all make grim reading: in 1912 North Korean archaeologists discovered a unicorn lair!

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