Document Type


Date of Degree

Spring 2010

Access Restrictions

Access restricted until 4/12/2021

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Communication Studies

First Advisor

Andrejevic, Mark

First Committee Member

Depew, David J

Second Committee Member

Peters, John D

Third Committee Member

McLeod, Kembrew

Fourth Committee Member

Ryang, Sonia


My main argument in this dissertation is that popular nationalism in post-war South Korea, unlike the conventional claim to it among many South Korean critical intellectuals and unification policy-makers, cannot serve as an antidote to anti-North Koreanism. On the contrary, it is problematic that the cultural politics of national identification, prescribed as an authentic critical tool of challenging anti-North Koreanism, helps program hierarchical inter-Korea relationships by exposing the South Korean public to anomalous cultural-political characteristics of North Koreans. It also does so by creating popular discourses that have reinforced unification policy agendas that frame the development of North Korea in terms that would make it amenable to the needs of transnational capitalism and the legitimacy of liberal human rights discourse. This critical endeavor claims that the critique of anti-North Koreanism cannot be successful without problematizing the idea of discontinuity that stresses there is a rupture between cold war and post-cold war forms of anti-North Koreanism. This is because any un-scrutinized presumption of the historical transition can only confuse critical interpretations of the role of national identification while thereby reinforcing policy-driven resolutions for inter-Korea sociability. Thus, I locate the significance of my work in a democratic call for South Korean critical communication and cultural studies as well as the public to effectively deconstruct the contingent discursive collaboration of national identification and anti-North Koreanism that complies with transnational globalization.


Biopolitics, Citizenship, Human Rights, Nationalism, Neo-Liberalism, North Korea


1, vii, 209 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 186-209).


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Copyright © 2010 Minkyu Sung

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