North Korean science fiction in 2023

Andrada Fiscutean explores the world of North Korean science fiction (previously at Boing Boing), "rich in political tension" and often featuring "breathtaking confrontations between North Korea and the United States." Though in the same vein as the isolated dictatorship's famously wooden propaganda and other cultural wonders, there's strange nuance in the details. And handsome linocut prints.

Although North Korean sci-fi is unusual and often breathtaking, it's relatively unknown in the Western world. Few stories have made it across the border, and so far, none have been published in English. Berthelier, who provided the translation for Change Course, hopes that he'll one day be able to gather several sci-fi stories into an anthology. He's fascinated by them.

Change Course, he says, features "a unique style of spectacular science fiction that mixes Cold War antagonism, spy novel tropes, and innovative military technology." … Change Course and other North Korean sci-fi works can seem perplexing to people who have spent all their lives in the West. Protagonists of these stories are often caught between two versions of themselves: They question everything regarding technology, disputing every preconception for the pursuit of scientific truth. At the same time, they follow the party's guidelines blindly, without questioning its decisions or authority.

Juche Puppies about to storm the Hugos.