In reinterpreting traditional history according to the Marxist world view, the question of periodization is vitally important. This article examines the controversies surrounding the periodization and the nature of the new interpretation of traditional history in North Korea. One characteristic that stands out prominently in North Korean historiography is the nationalistic emphasis placed on the uniqueness and the superiority of the Korean civilization unaffected by any external influence. Also noteworthy is the attempt to reinterpret modern history largely in terms of glorifying the immediate forefathers of Kim Il-sŏng at the expense of historical objectivity.

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