Communist and post-Communist oppression North Korea | 26 May 2023

North Korea: The best way of analyzing state propaganda

Show: false / Country: North Korea /

On 11 May 2023, War on the Rocks wrote an article on how to analyze what is being published by the North Korean authorities. The report states in summary:

Emerging North Korea analysts should learn to read between the lines of propaganda, ditch their biases, work in teams, contextualize their sources, and expand their horizons beyond the peninsula. Reading North Korean propaganda begins with learning how to see the value hiding behind the noise and repetition. This entails parsing Pyongyang’s public messaging from five different angles: who it is coming from, who it is intended for, when it is released, how it is presented, and what the context is. Propaganda is worth deciphering precisely because it is so carefully controlled.

World Watch Research analyst Thomas Muller comments: “As part of ‘deciphering precisely’, it is important to keep in mind that state propaganda is not just targeting the outside world: North Korean citizens are also under constant indoctrination. There are a host of programs to make sure they remain politically and ideologically ‘nourished’, a recent example being the 2023 reading campaign with the slogan ‘Read 10,000 pages’ (Radio Free Asia, 28 April 2023). Such programs aim at keeping all citizens loyal to the regime and help combat any ‘enemy’ influences, such as South Korean music and TV shows, as well as films of Western origin and Christian faith.”


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