The role of institutions in the longevity of Kim Jong Il's regime
Bowers, Christopher Owen.
Thesis (M.A.)--Georgetown University, 2010.; Includes bibliographical references.; Text (Electronic thesis) in PDF format. The Kim Jong Il regime in North Korea has been a policy concern for decades, due to the threats it poses to regional and international security. This regime has survived numerous crises and a moribund economy. How has Kim Jong Il been able to remain in power despite economic failure, natural disasters such as floods and crop failures, social catastrophe such as mass famine, and the enmity of the world's only superpower and many of his neighbors?; Jennifer Gandhi and Adam Przeworski offer a compelling explanation of regime survival in Comparative Political Studies (2007.) They argue that authoritarian leaders secure themselves by suborning opposition through legislatures and other institutions. Do Gandhi and Przeworski's findings successfully explain the longevity of Kim Jong Il in North Korea?; I propose to test their theory using an in-depth case study of North Korea during the time period from Kim Jong Il's appearance as an official in the regime in 1972 until 2009. This will contribute to the field both through a deeper understanding of the workings of the North Korean regime, but also through a strengthening or refinement of Gandhi and Przeworski's Institutionalization Theory.
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