If you look at satellite photographs of the far east by night, you’ll see a large splotch curiously lacking in light.”. In NOTHING TO ENVY, Demick follows the lives of six people: a couple of teenaged lovers courting in secret, an idealistic woman doctor, a homeless boy. An eye-opening account of life inside North Korea—a closed world of increasing global importance—hailed as a “tour de force of meticulous.

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The style of storytelling is not particularly compelling in the first half, but the lives of these ordinary people certainly are. This still exists in North Korea. Some history is still talked about, remembered by people, right?

I really knew next to nothing about North Korea before I read it, and it was a great introduction. In Hitler’s Germany, too, party membership furthered careers.

During the Third Reich, Germans could correspond with anyone in foreign countries but might have drawn the attention of the Gestapo with such correspondence. Nothing to Envy is a record of six refugees from DRPK who fled to the South and their experiences of living in both countries. I loved that when they meet again she is already married and pregnant by then she wonders why she was obsessed with THIS guy.

Mi-ran is from near the bottom of the North Korean social heap, while Jun-sang comes from a comparatively privileged family, with relatives in Japan. I found it moving when North Koreans in South Korea talk about how they wish they could set up a system in North Korea that would care for the elderly.

Although there are no cars and the streets are basically empty, she performs her job: I couldn’t help but wonder about the scores of orphaned boys who scavenged like homeless cats outside train stations. And fourthly it describes just what a horrible warmongering little nation this is, thanks to the obsessions of its leaders.


Private cars and motorcycles are nonexistent.

Hygiene barbafa or is? We have nothing to envy. Demick was a journalist and Bureau Chief for North and South Korea when she gathered information for this book. Trivia About Nothing to Envy: Please try again later.

It was an extreme version of what goes on in the United States. And how can one organize a revolution in a bomb-tight police state without being found out and executed before the revolt can draw momentum? I liked him, though. Another woman, now in South Korea with its plenties and excesses, varbara haunted by her husband’s last words before he died during nothkng famine, “Let’s go to a good restaurant and order a nice bottle of wine.

Barbara Demick’s book, however, is considered with “ordinary lives” in North Korea. What we hear on the news is just simply not enough. The Unknown story of Otto Warmbier, the American prisoner who was sent home brain-damaged https: Hating starts early- North Korean children line up to view anti-U. The sins of the father were passed down to three more generations. I would have hated the US for that rather than some ideology about capitalist pigs.

I found it helpful to read the notes for chapters that are at the end of the book as soon as I read their corresponding chapters. In addition, to her interviews of the defectors in South Korea, Demick has done extensive reporting on Korean history, government, and culture. Your life isn’t so bad after all, huh? His death has been mourned by the population in a dramatic and uncontrolled way, with people crying helplessly and expressing t On December seventeenth inKim Jong-il has died.

Both designations are misnomers with the clear purpose to fool the population. The average 17 year-old boy is 5″ shorter in North Korea than he is in South Korea. I’m no where near the end so I haven’t reached his conclusion if people are better off facing up to ALL of the horrors of a war, or if they should go on pretending the only victims were the Jews. There were 51 sections that were put together into three broad categories.


Our country lied to us?! Kim Jeong-Ya a pseudonym a Chinese activist helps North Koreans defectors cross safely to China- Photo by Katharina Hesse The majority of people become defectors by crossing the Tumen River which divides the two countries.

There was no famine during the Third Reich.

Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea

The first half of the book reads as a bit dry, and there are a handful of phrases that repeated throughout chunks of the book she had arrived So he threw the report of the informer into the waste basket and released Oma with the advice to, in future, hold her tongue.

They didn’t know if help was reaching the intended recipients. This does not mean I can stop here. My mother never talked too much about the visit. Dear God, is that fatty pork? View all 16 comments.

Nothing To Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea by Barbara Demick

It could take weeks to prepare it. These days were national holidays. Ultimately all of them find their way to South Korea.