North Korea's Vinalon Armstrong Summary

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Both “Postwar Reconstruction and a Declaration of Self-reliance, 1953-55” by Charles Armstrong and “North Korea’s Vinalon City: Industrialism as Socialist Everyday Life” by Cheehyung Kim focus on the post-Korean War reconstruction of North Korea as a model of the socialist economic development. The authors analyze the rise of North Korea as a showcase of socialist industrialization with “fraternal” supports from the whole Eastern Bloc, the role of this rapid` industrialization in consolidating Kim Il Sung’s power, and external and internal backgrounds behind the North’s gradual transition from an externally dependent economy to an autarky after the initial years of industrialization. Armstrong argues that “fraternal” assistances from the USSR, the PRC, and the Eastern European countries as well as its strict adherence to Stalinist economic programs with the heavy emphasis on heavy industries were the two biggest characteristics of the rapid industrialization of North Korea. Armstrong summarizes, “through a combination of tremendous work and sacrifice on the part of the North Korean people, generous economic and technical assistance from the “fraternal” socialist countries, and the…show more content…
The North’s efforts to make the Vinalon City of Hamhung as a forefront of its struggle for a self-reliant economy was remarkably analogous to the South’s development of Posco in the city of Pohang. To a great dismay to the North Koreans, the principal goal of making of the Vinalon Factory – making the North Korean economy a self-sufficient “Juche” economy independent from the global economy – determined different fates Vinalon Factory and Posco faced over the course of
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