American journalist Barbara Demick.

Barbara Demick

Moving to Seoul in 2001 to report on South and North Korea for the Los Angeles Times, Barbara Demick found entrance into the latter difficult and access to interviewees nearly impossible: Western journalists were given “minders” to monitor their actions. She began speaking with defectors from the country’s third-largest city, Chongjin, located in the far north. Her book, Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea, was the result of seven years of research and was awarded the BBC Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction and was a nonfiction finalist for the National Book Award in 2010. Before joining the Los Angeles Times as their Beijing bureau chief, she was with the Philadelphia Inquirer as a foreign correspondent in the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

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