Defending Juche Against an Uncharitable Analysis

Apa Studies: Asian and Asian American Philosophy 22 (2):12-17 (2023)
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In this article, I aim to do two things: first, introduce Juche, the official philosophy of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (“North Korea”), and second, defend Juche against Alzo David-West’s allegation that it is a nonsensical philosophy. I organize David-West’s complaints into two major strands—that Juche’s axiom is too vague to be of philosophical use and that Juche makes too stark a distinction between human vs. everything else—and offer responses to both strands. My goal isn’t to defend the regime, but to present its ideology in the most charitable way so its merits and demerits can be seen more clearly in future engagements.

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Hannah Kim
University of Arizona


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