north korea

All posts tagged north korea

POST 4: Describe your upcoming conference paper by giving the audience a small preview, or abstract, of your argument. Make sure to include the title of the paper and your main arguments; additionally, make an effort to hype up your paper by talking about its most interesting elements (perhaps a fascinating source, or the really strong argument you came up with.) Aim to persuade your classmates that your paper is one to look forward to hearing during our conference.


My paper is on the role of religion in dystopia. If I were watching me present this, I would be supremely unexcited about this- while religion is important, it is often boring in an academic context. However, I am really going to outline how dystopian and real governments exploit religion to gain control over its citizens. History is full of examples of how religion can be exploited to justify horrible atrocities.

I’ll be talking about North Korea, which is always fascinating. I mean, a nation where their leader is said to have written six operas in two years and 1500 books, hit eleven holes in one on his first time golfing, controlled the weather with his mind and caused a new star and a double rainbow when he was born is undoubtedly engrossing. (By the way, it’s probably only feasible to hit a hole-in-one on a few golf holes out of eighteen- it’s possible on par 3 holes, on which there are 5 AT MOST and only a couple of par 4 holes, but now I’m just getting picky). And the man who did this looks like this????

I mean, his neck rolls, his glasses, his liver spots, HIS TEETH (ew)…

And his son, whose picture you will probably see next to the definition of “pudgy” in the dictionary:

By the way, THIS is his picture on Wikipedia: that’s propaganda if I’ve ever seen one:

Anyhoo, I compare it to my independent reading novel, Perfect Ruin, which has a deeply religious regime ruling it. North Korea, while technically areligious, operates under the worship of their leader, with the people striving to emulate him. I highlight five points religious regimes use to control their citizens as such: deification of leaders, treating religious doctrine as fact, fear of outsiders, debt to the government, and silence of dissenters. By manipulating these factors, government gets an iron grip on its citizens and gives the citizens a justification of how their government is treating them. And when something so good and meaningful gets twisted into a way to suppress and abuse its citizens, it begs a further investigation.


By the way, I’m sorry I forgot to post this yesterday. I have two really stressful tests this week as well as that project yesterday, so I’ve been really busy and overwhelmed. Sorry!