Korea Briefing: Toward Reunification

Korea Briefing: Toward Reunification

Korea Briefing: Toward Reunification

Korea Briefing: Toward Reunification


Korea Briefing examines a period of far-reaching change in the two Koreas. Kim Il-Sung's death has marked the end of a political regime that dominated the North since before the Korean War. In the South, internal political challenges, difficult North-South issues such as economic relations, and new relationships with China, Russia, and other countries forecast momentous changes. Chapters on recent events, the state of current economic, political and international relations, and the directions of bellwether reforms in language policy and education are at the core of this study.


Whereas past volumes in the Korea Briefing series have focused on developments in the Republic of Korea (ROK), this year's edition provides equal coverage of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). As the immediate impact of the cold war's end recedes into recent history, the question of the divided peninsula remains unresolved. Korea Briefing: Toward Reunification presents analysis of both Koreas' politics, economics, and societies in the context of their future relations with each other. It remains to be seen in North Korea whether and when Kim Jong Il will be officially declared president and how the dprk leadership will steer the country out of economic crisis; the resolution of these two issues will bear directly on the reunification process.

The Asia Society is grateful to David R. McCann for putting together a superb team of authors, carefully editing the chapters, and maintaining a sense of humor throughout, and to the contributors themselves for their diligence and enthusiasm. the Society owes special thanks to Deborah Field Washburn, who, during her five-year tenure as series editor, shaped the series and ensured its distinguished reputation. Karen S. Fein worked hard in honor of that tradition and was assisted by Patricia Loo, who provided useful comments on early drafts; Lili Cole, Allison Ostrer, and Les Baquiran, who helped to prepare and proofread the manuscript; and Patricia Farr and Patricia Emerson, who copyedited, as always, with care. Finally, we wish to express our appreciation to M. E. Sharpe's Douglas Merwin for his support of the project and Angela Piliouras and Mai Shaikhanuar-Cota for their efforts in the volume's production.

Marshall M. Bouton Executive Vice President Asia Society

August 1996 . . .

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