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JANG JIN-SUNG worked as a senior writer for the Korean Workers’ Party and earned special recognition from the North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il for his poetry. In 2004 he defected to South Korea. He has published a collection of poems, I Am Selling My Daughter for 100 Won, and a memoir describing his escape from North Korea, Crossing the Tumen River with Poetry in My Heart. Both of these are in Korean.

Jang is the publisher of New Focus (in Korean) and New Focus International (in English), the only media platform run by North Korean defectors. He represented North Korea at the Cultural Olympiad in London in 2012 and is an Honorary Fellow of the Asia Pacific Writers’ and Translators’ Association.

Jang has also written a memoir in English, Dear Leader, published by Random House in the UK and Simon and Schuster in the US.

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Contributions to ALR

Non-fiction - No. 25, November 2012: Corruption
Poetry - No. 23, Spring 2012: Korea