Macquarie University
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Living with ghosts: American narratives constructing North Korea : Masters of Research in the Modern History, Politics and International Relations, Macquarie University, NSW, Australia

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posted on 2022-03-28, 09:26 authored by Richard Vogt
While the Korean peninsula looms as a regional security threat for most of North East Asia, North Korea is deliberately constructed as a global threat by the US. This thesis fills an important gap in the existing literature by exploring alternative questions raised by critical writers on what is often referred to as the "problem" of North Korea, especially in relation to memory. To organise these questions, Baudrillard's order of simulacrum is employed to help explore the concept of memory curation and how it relates to a renewed aesthetic turn in international relations studies. Baudrillard's simulacra is effective when also coupled with Derrida's notion of post-Cold War hauntology. In current US foreign policy North Korea is marginalised, too often an afterthought of US international concern. Traditional security studies have failed to fully account for this marginalisation. Yet for Pyongyang the Korean War has never been forgotten, while Washington struggles to remember it. Acknowledging this, the core questions this thesis seeks to answer are: what have been the main narratives employed by the US, preventing North Korea's normalisation in the international system? And, has this American behaviour helped in reinforcing regime stability in Pyongyang, allowing North Korea to fortify itself against American aggression?


Table of Contents

Chapter One. Introduction : spectacle, simulation and spectre -- Chapter Two. Narrative : communist ghosts -- Chapter Three. Narrative : rogue state -- Chapter Four. Narrative : human rights -- Chapter Five. The return : spectacle, simulation and spectre.


Bibliography: pages 92-111 Theoretical thesis.

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Arts, Department of Modern History, Politics and International Relations

Department, Centre or School

Department of Modern History, Politics and International Relations

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Lloyd Cox

Additional Supervisor 1

Jumana Bayeh


Copyright Richard Vogt 2015. Copyright disclaimer:




Korea (North)


1 online resource (111 pages)

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