Known as the hermit kingdom, North Korea follows its own rules. The country uses its own calendar and has its own time zone. For its nearly 25 million residents, the list of restrictions run long from watching foreign tv to using the internet. Even in international relations, North Korea is seen as a somewhat pariah due to its nuclear weapons testing facilities.
Many perceive this reclusiveness as a result of its leadership under the Kim dynasty. But this policy actually originated in 14th century China, which had a very strong cultural and political influence over the Korean peninsula. This translated to the spread of China's neo-confucianism, an ideology popular at the time, which advocated for ethnocentrism and reclusiveness. So could this be the reason for North Korea's isolation? Watch Seeker Daily's episode to find out.
The Huffington Post: Visiting North Korea, The Hermit Kingdom
The Washington Post: Eric Talmadge is the only Western reporter regularly in North Korea. Here's what it's like.
PBS: North Korea: Some Historical Perspective