North good, south bad? Time to shed the Korea stereotypes | Min Jin Lee

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South Koreans like to sing, dance and have fun. And North Koreans should not be defined by one man

With the Winter Olympics in full swing, the big story is the Koreans, in particular the presence in Pyeongchang of Kim Jong-un’s younger sister. It is said that analysts have been scrutinising Kim Yo-jong’s hair, makeup, dress, cheekbones, everything in microcosm. But few know very much about any of us.

Last year, a journalist from Europe asked me something funny. “What are Koreans like?” Rather a broad question, I thought. That said, I figured this was my big chance to correct an even broader misconception of my people as merely war-mongering or as plastic-surgery obsessed. I suppose I should have said: “Koreans? Which ones?” There are at least two kinds from two republics, each formed in 1948: North Koreans from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and South Koreans from the Republic of Korea. The third kind of Koreans are ones like me, ethnic Koreans from the diaspora who identify with neither republic, because it makes no meaningful sense to do so.

Related: ‘Humble’ Kim Yo-jong has charmed the media, but the glow is unlikely to last

Related: North Korea’s cheerleaders amaze and appal at Winter Olympics

A Korean is many things – she yearns to shimmy, croon, embrace, and he may want to tuck into dumplings or live in fear

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Source: north-korea
Link : North good, south bad? Time to shed the Korea stereotypes | Min Jin Lee

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