Marching Through Suffering: Loss and Survival in North Korea

Hardcover | April 21, 2015

bySandra Fahy

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Marching Through Suffering is a deeply personal portrait of the ravages of famine and totalitarian politics in modern North Korea since the 1990s. Featuring interviews with more than thirty North Koreans who defected to Seoul and Tokyo, the book explores the subjective experience of the nation's famine and its citizens' social and psychological strategies for coping with the regime.

These oral testimonies show how ordinary North Koreans, from farmers and soldiers to students and diplomats, framed the mounting struggles and deaths surrounding them as the famine progressed. Following the development of the disaster, North Koreans deployed complex discursive strategies to rationalize the horror and hardship in their lives, practices that maintained citizens' loyalty to the regime during the famine and continue to sustain its rule today. Casting North Koreans as a diverse people with a vast capacity for adaptation rather than as a monolithic entity passively enduring oppression, Marching Through Suffering positions personal history as key to the interpretation of political violence.

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Marching Through Suffering is a deeply personal portrait of the ravages of famine and totalitarian politics in modern North Korea since the 1990s. Featuring interviews with more than thirty North Koreans who defected to Seoul and Tokyo, the book explores the subjective experience of the nation's famine and its citizens' social and psy...

Sandra Fahy is assistant professor of anthropology at Sophia University in Tokyo and a fellow at the Korean Studies Institute at the University of Southern California. She has been a Sejong Society Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Southern California and earned her Ph.D. at the School for Oriental and African Studies, Univers...
Format:HardcoverDimensions:272 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.98 inPublished:April 21, 2015Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:023117134X

ISBN - 13:9780231171342

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Table of Contents

Note on Translation, Confidentiality, Terms, and RomanizationAcknowledgmentsIntroduction: Loss and Survival1. The Busy Years2. Cohesion and Disintegration3. The Life of Words4. Life Leaves Death Behind5. Breaking Points6. The New DivisionConclusion: Is Past Prologue?Appendix: A Short History of the North Korean FamineNotesBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

Sandra Fahy's fascinating work... achieves something of much depth and empirical utility to the scholar.