My review: “Depotism” doesn’t seem to be a suitably outrageous description for North Korea’s governmental system. I guess you could call it a sad caricature of Orwell’s Animal Farm. I highly recommend this book as a window into the atrocities of the North Korea.
To me, North Korea, is a cautionary tale as to where statism can take things in some cases. And while I am by no means a foreign policy interventionist, it may be the case that separates the interventionist boys from the interventionist men. Will the interventionists spend their time eliminating hackish despots that may or may not have nuclear weapons in the next 25 years and are generally more moderate than their populations? Or will they tackle North Korea?
The book presented indirectly through the words of the author, who narrates Shin’s story. It’s only 224 pages (or 5 hours if you chose the audio book format). It’s an easy and worthwhile read.
I started reading this book with a fairly completely “overview” understanding of what life in North Korea is like, even though I probably can never know it in the deepest sense of experience! Even though my “overview” knowledge covered most of what is shared here, this book was very helpful in visualizing some facts which previously were largely abstract. And I found myself shuddering at times, especially at the cold-hearted betrayal and dehumanization that stands at the very base of the North Korean system.