The amazing folks over at the North Korea news and analysis website NK News are back with the second edition of their (hopefully annual*) NK News Calendar, with pictures by award-winning photographer Eric Lafforgue. You can buy the calendar here – and get $5 off by entering beijingcream as the coupon code.
There’s more to North Korea than “propaganda, nuclear weapons, and military parades,” as stated on the calendar’s website, and if you doubt that, just check out some of the photos below, which NK News has graciously shared with us. It’s the portrait of a peoples, depicting frailty, joy, hope and ambition, discipline, yearning, and love.
A more cynical person might call it infirmity, brainwashing, zeal and conviction, Juche, hungering, and idolization, but doing so would be to ignore the very real striving that happens anywhere and everywhere for that universal yet so singularly human value of self-actualization. And besides, we’re talking about flip sides of life here, spinning one to the next, and who can say how this coin — for you, in this life or the next — might land?
*Lafforgue cannot return to North Korea. As he told Business Insider last year: “They know that when I come, I take pictures. They prefer the tourism money, until it causes a problem for one of the people in charge.”
Note: while images of political leaders appear in the sample photos below, the calendar itself is “100% propaganda free.” As NK News explains: “We know you don’t want portraits of North Korean leaders on your wall, so rest assured in knowing that the North Korea Wall calendar is 100% propaganda free. And know that not a single cent from your purchase goes towards the North Korean government.” So go check it out.