Teaching Essay Writing In Pyongyang

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But I had entered the country under my own name, and gained the unpaid teaching job based on my qualifications.I was being moved from a position of authority—What do you know? It soon became clear that this was a battle I could not win, and I relented.The content of my work was what really mattered, I told myself.“I think calling it a memoir trivializes my reporting.” Memoir, after all, suggests memories—the unresolved issues of the past, examined through the author’s own experiences.My work, though literary and at times personal, was a narrative account of investigative reporting.Having been born and raised in South Korea, I am fluent in the country’s language and culture, which enabled me to glean the subtleties beneath the surface, without the censoring presence of an official translator.As I taught, I lived in a locked compound under complete surveillance: Every room was bugged, every class recorded.I scribbled down conversations as they happened and buried my notes in a lesson plan.I wrote at night, erasing the copy from my laptop each time I signed off, saving it to USB sticks that I carried on my body at all times.They slammed me as a “selfish person” for using my access at the university to write a “kiss-and-tell memoir.” They accused me, without any evidence, of “putting sources at risk.” In their eyes, it seemed, I was a memoirist treading on journalistic turf, a Korean schoolteacher who sold out her students for a quick buck.For the most part, the attacks ignored the substance of what I had written—my investigative findings—and focused instead on my methods.


Comments Teaching Essay Writing In Pyongyang

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