Why North Koreans don’t have time to pursue hobbies – NKNews Podcast Ep. 230


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A unique characteristic of North Korean life is that almost all citizens must be a member of an organization. This begins at a young age, when kindergarten students learn to bow in unison to portraits of the country’s leaders. It ramps up in adolescence through participation in the Boy and Girl Scout-like Korean Children’s Union. And it continues in adulthood through membership in labor unions, the women’s union, the farmer’s union, the army and an array of other organizations — chief among them the Workers’ Party of Korea. These organizations oversee what’s known in the DPRK as organizational life (조직생활), a term encompassing ideological education, self-criticism sessions and more. This week, North Korean defector Jung Yuna joins the podcast to discuss the ins and outs of this inescapable part of life in the DPRK, as well as her own experiences in the country and her current work as a YouTuber in South Korea. Jung Yuna is a North Korean defector and human rights activist who now runs the popular Jung Yuna TV (정유나 TV) YouTube channel. You can follow her on Instagram @loveyuna88. About the podcast: The North Korea News Podcast is a weekly podcast hosted by Jacco Zwetsloot (@JaccoZed) exclusively for NK News, covering all things DPRK — from news to extended interviews with leading experts and analysts in the field, along with insight from our very own journalists.