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Journalist who lived, worked undercover in North Korea to speak

OSWEGO — SUNY Oswego’s annual Hart Hall Global Awareness Conference will present Suki Kim, said to be the only writer to have lived undercover in North Korea for immersive journalism, as keynote speaker at 7 p.m. Nov. 10, in Sheldon Hall ballroom.

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Suki Kim

The investigative journalist and novelist, born and raised in South Korea, has traveled to North Korea since 2002, when she entered Pyongyang by joining a loyalist group of Kim Jong Il — the late father of the country’s current ruler — for a cover feature for the New York Review of Books.

The 2018 Global Awareness Conference also will host a welcoming reception at 5 p.m. Nov. 9, at Hart Hall Global Living and Learning Center, featuring opening remarks, entertainment and dinner offering a variety of cultural foods.

The conference is free and open to the public.

On Nov. 10, the conference will offer academic presentations, stories from study abroad experiences, representatives of various campus departments and Fulbright Scholars. Phi Beta Delta will have its induction ceremony for international scholars.

During a decade-long investigation, Suki Kim witnessed both Kim Jong-Il’s 60th birthday celebration and his death at 69. She profiled the New York Philharmonic’s 2008 concert in North Korea for Harper’s, for which she has written in depth about defectors from a nation long known as a hermit kingdom.

After spending six months in Pyongyang gaining insights into the psychology of those who would rule North Korea after Kim Jong Il, she wrote a bestselling book titled “Without You, There Is No Us: Undercover Among the Sons of North Korea’s Elite.”

Kim’s first novel, “The Interpreter,” was a finalist for a PEN Hemingway Prize. Her articles and essays have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Slate and other publications. Kim has been featured on CNN, BBC, NPR and on Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show.”

She holds a Fulbright research grant in nonfiction and Guggenheim fellowship in fiction. In 2017-18, Kim was a Ferris journalism fellow at Princeton University. She gave a TED Talk in 2015 that has drawn millions of viewers online.

For more information, visit www.oswego.edu/academics/hart-global-awareness-conference.