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North Korea Culture and Mass Media

Culture

Early Korean culture drew strong impetus from both China and Japan. Art objects of Chinese origin are preserved from the century closest to the birth of Christ.

Already then, however, a distinctive Korean style had developed, with shapes and patterns on cult and ornamental objects, which are completely different from what was found in China and Central Asia. Paintings from the same era have found paintings that, though Chinese influenced, have their own features in both figurative depiction and ornamentation.

Korean culture experienced several periods of prosperity during ancient and medieval times. Korean stone sculpture from the early Middle Ages is regarded as the most artistic development in East Asia.

  • Countryaah: Latest population statistics of North Korea, including religious profiles and major languages spoken as well as population growth rates in next three decades.

Literature emerged during the Choson period from the late 1300s. The creation of the Hangul writing system in the 15th century contributed to the spread of national literature. Only during the latter part of the 19th century did Korean culture begin to be influenced by European currents.

Since 1948, all cultural activities have been strongly ideologically characterized and strictly state-controlled. Literature, opera and dance will raise the proletarian class consciousness, prove the superiority of North Korean culture and praise the country's leaders. The artists serve at the major state and regional cultural institutions.

Archeology has become a tool for creating national self-esteem. Large resources have been invested in excavations, and the museums organize visits from workplaces and schools.

  • Songaah: List and lyrics of songs related to the country name of North Korea. Artists and albums are also included.

Culture of North Korea2014

December

November

Top post for Kim Jong-Un's sister

Kim Jong-Un's sister is reported to have held a high position within the party as Deputy Director of the Central Committee.

Miller and Bae are released

North Korea releases two Americans held captive, Matthew Todd Miller and Kenneth Bae. The release is seen by observers in the outside world as a sign that North Korea has become more willing to negotiate.

August

Americans are calling for help

The two Americans arrested during the year are pleading for help from their government to return home, in an interview with the AP News Agency. They fear long prison sentences, as does Kenneth Bae (see April 2013).

Short-range missiles are fired

North Korea launches five short-range missiles as Pope Francis arrives in South Korea.

July

More test shoots

North Korea will make another five test shoots with short-range robots during the month.

Japan eases sanctions

Japan decides to ease some of its sanctions on North Korea. It is in exchange for the North Koreans resuming investigation into what happened to the Japanese who were kidnapped by North Korea in the 1970s and 1980s. Reports indicate that several of them are still alive. Japan will remove some restrictions on travel to and from North Korea and allow the transfer of larger sums to North Korea than before. North Korean vessels will also be allowed to call Japanese ports if they are linked to humanitarian missions. The relief of the sanctions is considered to have the most symbolic significance.

May

Multi-storey house collapses

The official news agency announces that a multi-storey house in Pyongyang has collapsed and killed hundreds of people. The house is said to have had major design defects and inspections of the building have been substandard.

April

Drones are discovered in South Korea

Two drones reportedly coming from North Korea are found in South Korea.

Kim Jong-Un is re-elected

Kim Jong-Un is re-elected chairman of the National Defense Commission.

March

Shooting at the sea border

North Korea drills near the disputed sea border against South Korea in the Yellow Sea. After grenades enter South Korean territory, South Korea responds to the shelling.

Trial shoots defy prohibition

Trials of two medium-range missiles take place at the end of the month, despite the UN ban.

Kim Jong-un's first choice

The first election is held for the Supreme People's Assembly, Parliament, since Kim Jong-Un took over the helm. Unsurprisingly, the turnout is 100 percent in the constituency where the leader himself is running, and 100 percent vote for him.

February

Trial firing of short-range missiles

North Korea is conducting several tests of short-range missiles. The test shootings are ongoing while the US and South Korea are holding joint military exercises.

Families in reunion

The first reunification meetings between families not seen since the Korean War are organized. There are a few hundred people on each side. The meetings are closely monitored by North Korean government officials. The last time such meetings were arranged between the countries was in 2010.

Guilty for crimes against humanity

The UN Human Rights Council provides its report (see March 2013). According to the report, there is evidence that the regime has committed a crime against humanity. Testimonies from hundreds of North Koreans describe torture, children in prison and starvation, a woman forced to drown her own baby and terrible conditions in the country's labor camps.

 

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