SOCIALIST LEGACY: WEST GERMAN PERCEPTION OF EAST GERMANS AND SOUTH KOREAN PERCEPTION OF NORTH KOREANS

University essay from Malmö högskola/Fakulteten för kultur och samhälle (KS)

Author: Eriks Varpahovskis; [2012]

Keywords: Ethnicity; DPRK; GDR; Stereotype; Ossi; Saeteomin;

Abstract: Opposition of socialist East and capitalist West in XX century led to division of nations andcreation of new states. Due to historical process Korea and Germany were divided intoDemocratic People’s Republic of Korea and Republic of Korea, and German DemocraticRepublic and Federal Republic of Germany, respectively. Development of states requiredconstruction of new ethnic identities/ethnicities. In this research through the prism of Cornell andHartmann’s constructivist approach and stereotype theory secondary and primary data isanalyzed.. On the basis of analysis of secondary data this research examines and comparesmeasures that were used by ruling parties of GDR and DPRK in order to create and develop newethnic identities. Further in paper on the basis of results of interviews and analysis of secondarydata is described and compared how West Germans perceive East Germans and how SouthKoreans perceive North Koreans. According to the results of the research it is possible to statewhich measures were undertaken by governments of GDR and DPRK in order to create anethnicity and it is possible to state that West German stereotypes about East Germans and SouthKorean stereotypes about North Koreans are partly based on ideological/political aspects ofdivisions of nations.

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