May 27, 2024

Ask A North Korean

Your chance to ask questions to North Koreans about life growing up in the DPRK

Ask a North Korean: What was it like playing soccer professionally in the DPRK?

Ask a North Korean: What was it like playing soccer professionally in the DPRK?

A defector writes about his training schedule and the hurdles he faced trying to represent his country

Ask a North Korean: What was it like playing soccer professionally in the DPRK?
David February 13, 2024
Ask a North Korean: Does the DPRK have digital payment systems?

Ask a North Korean: Does the DPRK have digital payment systems?

Services have cropped up for transferring money and making payments, but distrust in banks poses obstacles to their use

Ask a North Korean: Does the DPRK have digital payment systems?
Rose February 6, 2024
Ask a North Korean: Why a DPRK laborer in Russia decided to defect

Ask a North Korean: Why a DPRK laborer in Russia decided to defect

A recent defector writes about growing disillusioned during 90s famine and how pandemic pushed him to make a break

Ask a North Korean: Why a DPRK laborer in Russia decided to defect
Jin Ju-dong January 17, 2024
Ask A North Korean: Do North Koreans celebrate Western holidays?

Ask A North Korean: Do North Koreans celebrate Western holidays?

A defector writes about her memories of festivities in the DPRK and her first experience of Valentine’s Day

Ask A North Korean: Do North Koreans celebrate Western holidays?
Rose January 9, 2024
Ask a North Korean: Do North Koreans get tattoos?

Ask a North Korean: Do North Koreans get tattoos?

Ink is common among older generations, but usually as a way to show loyalty rather than as a form of self-expression

Ask a North Korean: Do North Koreans get tattoos?
Joshua Kim January 2, 2024
Ask a North Korean: Can children in the DPRK express their creativity?

Ask a North Korean: Can children in the DPRK express their creativity?

David, who defected in 2012, writes about discovering the joys of self-expression through his work as a YouTuber

Ask a North Korean: Can children in the DPRK express their creativity?
David December 25, 2023
Ask a North Korean: What I learned from visiting a DPRK restaurant abroad

Ask a North Korean: What I learned from visiting a DPRK restaurant abroad

A defector writes about his surreal meal at a North Korean restaurant in Laos and how it led him to reflect on his life

Ask a North Korean: What I learned from visiting a DPRK restaurant abroad
Joshua Kim December 15, 2023
Ask A North Korean: Are there private academies and tutors in the DPRK?

Ask A North Korean: Are there private academies and tutors in the DPRK?

North Koreans are passionate about education, and like in South Korea, a fever for private instruction has taken hold

Ask A North Korean: Are there private academies and tutors in the DPRK?
Jin December 8, 2023
Settling in Seoul: What do you think about critics of North Korean defectors?

Settling in Seoul: What do you think about critics of North Korean defectors?

A DPRK escapee talks about encountering people who question his testimony and how he learned to embrace his past

Settling in Seoul: What do you think about critics of North Korean defectors?
David November 21, 2023
Ask a North Korean: What are ideological study sessions like?

Ask a North Korean: What are ideological study sessions like?

A defector writes about taking notes for hours to prove her loyalty, memorizing the leader’s speeches and more

Ask a North Korean: What are ideological study sessions like?
Rose November 10, 2023
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