AP/HUMA 4515 3.00
North Korea: Culture, Literature, Film
This course explores the development of literature and films in North Korea from the late 1940s to the present. Students use various approaches to the study of literature and film to analyze literary works and films in the context of the evolving socialist culture. Emphasis is placed on the historical background and the continuity and transformation of Korean cultural traditions. At the end of the Second World War Korea was liberated from thirty-five years of Japanese colonial rule (1910-1945). Internal divisions and external pressures lead to the outbreak of the Korean War (1950-53) and resulted in the division between the Republic of Korea (ROK) in the south and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) in the north. At this time many of the writers and intellectuals who had been members of the Korean Artists Proletarian Federation during the Japanese colonial period contributed to the early phase of North Korean literature and art. During the 1950s and 60s there were political purges which resulted in the disappearance of many prominent writers and artists. From the 1970s onward literary and artistic production in North Korea became subject to strict government control following the principles of self-reliance thought (chuch'e sasang). Materials covered in the course include: basic background about Korean cultural traditions and contemporary developments, English translations of North Korean literary works, showings of North Korean films with English subtitles, articles about North Korean literature and films, articles about socialist realism in literature and cinema.