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North Korea
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Table of Contents

Foreword: The Myth and the Reality of the State of Paranoia Introduction: the paranoid peninsula Part I - The Juche nation: beloved leaders, brilliant thoughts, power cuts and empty shelves 1. A normal day in Pyongyang 2. The Juche state: political theory in North Korea 3. The revolutionary dynasty: leadership in North Korea Part II - The economics of North Korea: Chollima, speed battles, collapse and famine 4. Economics Pyongyang style: command and control 5. The worst of times: food, famine and the arduous march 6. The start of a sort of reform: change and regime survival 7. The reality of reform: a case study of Sinuiju Part III - Diplomacy and military: foreign relations, nuclear crisis and self-defence 8. Don't poke the snake: US-DPRK relations 9. Nuclear ambitions revealed: bluster, brinkmanship or battle? 10. 'Military First' emerges Part IV - Change, collapse and reunification 11. One Korea: the dream of reunification 12. Kim3: the dynasty continues 13. How will the story end? Conclusion: still the world's most dangerous tripwire

About the Author

Born in London and educated there and in Glasgow, Paul French has lived and worked in Shanghai for many years. As a leading expert on North Korea he is a widely published analyst and commentator on Asia and has written a number of books dealing with China's pre-1949 history, Asian politics and current affairs. His previous books include a history of North Korea, a biography of Shanghai adman and adventurer Carl Crow, and a history of foreign correspondents in China. Paul was awarded the 2013 Edgar for best fact crime for his international best-seller Midnight in Peking.

Reviews

'Paul French writes with wit, eloquence and rare clarity about the complicated history of North Korea.' Barbara Demick, author of Nothing to Envy: Real Lives in North Korea 'North Korea's ability to worry and shock remains perhaps the only predictable aspect of the country's behaviour. Paul French's no-nonsense approach to understanding the country's history, political system, ideology and what remains of its decimated economy is one of the best introductions to a country that does all it can to resist outside inspection and comprehension. This is the most accessible starting point for anyone wanting to understand the hermit kingdom.' Kerry Brown, professor and director, China Studies Centre, University of Sydney 'This clear-eyed overview to North Korea's modern history is packed full of fascinating detail. French ably outlines the hermit kingdom's ideology, economic system and haphazard efforts at reform, while simultaneously revealing why pickpockets target Kim Il-sung badges, what the North Korean cabinet's position is on lice and why smoking can be a small act of resistance.' Louisa Lim, Beijing correspondent, NPR '...enriches one's understanding of the Hermit Kingdom. The book provides a well-informed analysis for scholars of all ages and particularly for researchers on North Korea.' Political Studies Review 'Paul French writes with wit, eloquence and rare clarity about the complicated history of North Korea.' Barbara Demick, author of Nothing to Envy: Real Lives in North Korea 'North Korea's ability to worry and shock remains perhaps the only predictable aspect of the country's behaviour. Paul French's no-nonsense approach to understanding the country's history, political system, ideology and what remains of its decimated economy is one of the best introductions to a country that does all it can to resist outside inspection and comprehension. This is the most accessible starting point for anyone wanting to understand the hermit kingdom.' Kerry Brown, professor and director, China Studies Centre, University of Sydney 'This clear-eyed overview to North Korea's modern history is packed full of fascinating detail. French ably outlines the hermit kingdom's ideology, economic system and haphazard efforts at reform, while simultaneously revealing why pickpockets target Kim Il-sung badges, what the North Korean cabinet's position is on lice and why smoking can be a small act of resistance.' Louisa Lim, Beijing correspondent, NPR '...enriches one's understanding of the Hermit Kingdom. The book provides a well-informed analysis for scholars of all ages and particularly for researchers on North Korea.' Political Studies Review

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