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Synopsis

In Exit Emperor Kim Jong-il, authors John H. Cha and K. J. Sohn present a compelling portrait of two men caught up in a struggle for the survival of North Korean society. Th e product of an eight-year study of individuals who observed and worked under Kim Jong-il, the dictator of North Korea for over thirty years, this biography provides insight into the Kim’s family corruption of power.

The story is told through the eyes of Hwang Jang-yop, a renowned philosopher and writer, former International Secretariat of North Korea, and mentor to Kim Jong-il. It narrates Hwang’s journey in his battle against Kim’s greed for power. It reveals a three-dimensional portrait of Kim Jong-il rarely chronicled, from Kim’s early days and rise to power to his economic crisis and his continual power struggle.

As well as recording the life of Kim, Exit Emperor Kim Jong-il recounts Hwang’s defection from North Korea so he could tell the world about the corrupt dictatorship and its policies that he felt were responsible for the massive famine in North Korea. Through testimonies from Hwang and other defectors from North Korea, this biography reveals what was going on inside the man, Kim Jong-il, and the society he ruled.

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