Nothing to Envy

Jul 16, 2012

North Korea has long been in the dark, both literally and figuratively. Little if any light glows in the country at night, and little light has been shed on the lives of ordinary people living under the world’s cruelest totalitarian regime. In her book Nothing to Envy, journalist Barbara Demick goes deep inside the secretive country and  documents the lives of six North Koreans over 15 years, revealing the reality of everyday life there. It’s a dark place, to be sure, but not dark enough to quell love, ambitions or the struggle for survival. Demick joins us on Tuesday.

The Brigham Young University David M. Kennedy for International Studies is hosting Barbara Demick on Thursday, July 19, for a lecture about North Korea. Her book, Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea, was named the center's Summer 2012 Book of the Semester.

The free lecture will take place at 11 a.m. in 238 Herald R. Clark Building on the BYU campus in Provo. The public is welcome to attend.

  • To see a propaganda video of the North Korean song "We Have Nothing to Envy in the World," visit the web site for Barbara Demick's book, Nothing to Envy.


  • Barbara Demick is the Beijing bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times. She began interviewing North Koreans about their lives in 2001, when she moved to Seoul, South Korea, for the Times. Her reporting on North Korea won the Overseas Press Club award for human rights reporting, the Asia Society’s Osborne Eliott award and the American Academy of Diplomacy’s Arthur Ross Award. She is also the author of Logavina Street: Life and Death in a Sarajevo Neighborhood.