I have decided to write a series of posts on hope and how it deciphers itself in different contexts .Here is that hope which propels you to overcome your darkest fears.
THE RADIO WHICH CANNOT BE TURNED OFF
I take you to this country which identifies as a complete world in itself. Closed boundaries ,you cross and you will be marked a "defector" the property of the military .Where, if u bestow love its only for the 'dear leader'. Your faith is not a choice ,you are an atheist by order..
Each day you wake up to the praises of your "dear leader" sung directly to your ears through the radio placed right at the entrance of each house of the county. The entire 25 million of your country men wake up to the same singing, by order.
UNLESS YOU LIVE IN THE COUNTRYSIDE
The only way to turn off the radio is by living in the countryside. Because radio works on electricity and daily electricity does not visit the countryside so with running water or everyday food.
SO GENTLEMEN WE ARE IN THE DEMOCRATIC PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF KOREA[DPRK] / THE NORTH KOREA.
Here the government will feed you and provide you with free housing, education, and health care. In exchange, the authorities will tell you what to think what to say what to wear; decide where you would live, study, and work; and most important, determine whether you would be able to make it to the military . To make all these decisions, the state would refer to your performance at work and school and your SONGBUN—the sociopolitical classification that determines your status based largely on your family’s history of perceived loyalty to the government.
I need coffee.
No, we are not going there. They do not know of the term" immigration" nor do they promote any tourism.
What I want to talk about is the JANGMADANG GENERATION of DPRK, Their hope to an economy driven future.
THE "BLACK" MARKETS OF KOREA-
These are the local, illegal ,black, market grounds or "Jangmadang" formed as a result of liberty snatched from the hands of the regime .They are now the biggest open secrets of the country and has been the real economy ever since. Major products sold here are in black or smuggled from across the borders.
Background-the mid-1990s. The fall of the Soviet Union crushed North Korea's fragile economy, and floods helped bring a devastating famine. The North Korean government failed to feed its people.
In that time of crisis, when North Koreans could no longer rely on the state, signs of grass-roots capitalism emerged in the form of these black markets. There is a Korean saying-
"You can find anything but a cat's horn"
meaning anything which exists can be found in the black markets.
Reversal of gender roles-An interesting aspect worth discussing is that this shift to marketization as primary work has made woman the breadwinners.
In fact no efforts by the government to curb these open markets and trying to bring this practice to a halt could succeed. This has led to the emergence of another small circle of elites called "Donju" meaning "masters of money" literally the middle men, who fear that if the Korean peninsula is united they North Korean closed market wont be able to compete with the globalized market giants of the south.
The government had to not only accept the presence of these markets but also address them as a main stream yet informal economy. This carries the hopes of people of Korea to turn their country into a people centric nation from a military centric nation.
Discussions and opinions are welcomed.