On May 15, I attended a virtual reading offered by the Autumn House Press in Pittsburgh. One of the readers was Michael Wang, who read a piece about the Tiananmen Square massacre. Since this is now June, the 32nd anniversary, I thought of reposting this piece from 2011. At the time of the bloody crackdown, I was teaching in Seoul and would come home from my night class to watch events unfold on CNN. Later that summer, I was at the photocopy machine in the linguistics department of the University of Pittsburgh, my alma mater, and a Chinese graduate … Read More
Recently, Dr. Sandra Fahy and I had three interviews about her second book, Dying for Rights: Putting North Korea’s Human Rights Abuses on the Record. Our first interview deals with four categories of human rights abuses (Link), our second with the history of the development of the DPRK police state (Link), and this final one with the international dimensions of rights violations: overseas workers, treatment of foreign nationals and state representatives and rhetoric. Her first book was based on her interviews with North Korean famine refugees. (Link)
We spoke over Skype when Sandra … Read More
Dr. Sandra Fahy holds a PhD in anthropology from the University of London and is now teaching at Sophia University in Tokyo. In our first interview she discussed the North Korean famine of the 1990s, the subject of her first book. (Link) Recently we talked about various human rights abuses treated in her second, forthcoming book, Dying for Rights: Putting North Korea’s Human Rights Abuses on the Record (Link) Here she provides a historical context for the development of the DPRK police state.
We spoke over Skype while Sandra was in Japan and I was in … Read More
In 2011, I interviewed my friend Dr. Sandra Fahy on her first book, Marching through Suffering: Loss and Survival in North Korea, (Link) which was based on the testimony she’d gathered from North Korean famine victims who’d defected to Korea or Japan. Her second book is now with the editors at Columbia University Press and will be out soon.
This interview took place just after the Trump-Kim summit in Singapore, when Sandra was at home in Japan and I was in the Philippines. The next interview, which will appear on December 1, deals with the history of … Read More
Krys Lee is a Korean-American writer living in Seoul and teaching at Underwood College at Yonsei University. Three years ago we talked about her short story collection, Drifting House. (Link) Recently we discussed her novel, which centers on three major characters who are kept in a safe house in China on the North Korean border—where exactly, she doesn’t say. Since much of the novel is inspired by Krys’s activism for human rights, I asked her to talk about her activism and the North Koreans who asked her to tell their story. We spoke over Skype when she was … Read More