February 05, 2023
Analysis

International affairs: How North Korean films portray cross-cultural romance

North Korea remains an ethnocentric state in which a person of non-Korean blood can never be an equal member of society

North Korean propaganda and popular entertainment often attempt to boost the country's international stature through the appearance of foreign friends and supporters, who uniformly come to recognize the superiority of the uniquely self-reliant state and its pure-blooded denizens. 

Close relationships between North Koreans and foreigners in these works — especially romantic and marital ties — are seen as virtually impossible. However, one recurring exception can be found for North Korea’s historical antagonists, the Japanese.