By Mark Edward Harris
All yet closed to outdoors viewers and impression, its public posture guarded and combative, we see virtually not anything from within North Korea. Award-winning photographer Mark Edward Harris has had infrequent entry to this reclusive state, touring inside of its borders in addition to documenting existence alongside its northern border with China and the hugely militarized DMZ dividing North and South Korea. His photos are extraordinary: the huge structure and empty streets of the capital; tightly managed zones of financial and vacationer alternate with South Korea; mass video games that includes 100,000 choreographed contributors. brief essays, prolonged captions, and a foreword by means of North Korea specialist Bruce Cumings additional light up a rustic more and more on the heart of foreign politics.
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Extra resources for Inside North Korea
The text on the wall, quoting Kim Il Sung, stresses the importance of maintaining good physical and mental health for dance students. 54 PYONGYANG 55 56 PYONGYANG OPPOSITE: Piano lessons. After-school drawing class. 57 OPPOSITE: Mangyongdae Schoolchildren’s Palace tour guides. A performance in the school’s state-ofthe-art, 2,000-seat theater. 59 60 PYONGYANG 61 PREVIOUS SPREAD: OPPOSITE: Ninety-minute recitals of highly choreographed singing, dancing, and acrobatics are held for visiting guests to the school.
Hundreds or even thousands of versions of the song (with the refrain “Arirang, Arirang” common to all) share the basic story of a woman hoping that her departing lover will have sore feet 44 PYONGYANG and return to her before he travels too far away. Its theme is all the more resonant in a divided country. In 1985, as part of an exchange in which families separated between South and North Korea were allowed to meet and art troupes exchanged visits between capital cities, a troupe from Seoul performed the song in the North Korean capital.
The museum hosts a cyclorama depicting the Battle on Height 1211, fought during the Fatherland Liberation War (the Korean War). FOLLOWING SPREAD: A roadside mural depicts the hero’s welcome that met the arrival of Kim Il Sung near Pyongyang Municipal Stadium (later renamed Kim Il Sung Stadium) on October 14, 1945, at the end of the Second World War and the country’s liberation from Japanese occupation. 33 34 PYONGYANG 35 Dedicated on April 14, 1982, Pyongyang’s Arch of Triumph at 197 feet is purposely several feet higher than Paris’s Arc de Triomphe.