Propaganda is the application of information that is not objective in any manner. I t is a style that is used to influence an audience and develop an agenda by resenting facts in a selective manner to enhance a particular synthesis. The applicants of this style use loaded language to present an emotional and less rational response. The method is often used by governments, companies, activist groups and the media among others. Various materials and media can be used to convey messages of propaganda such as application of invented technologies, cartoons, paintings, pamphlets, posters, radio shows, films, TV shows and websites among others. The style has also been applied by great leaders such as Mao Zedong and Kim Jung-Un.
There exist various similarities in the use of propaganda between Mao Zedong and Kim Jong-Un. Both leaders made use of the mass communication platforms to control their respective nations. The people's republic of China incorporated the use of propaganda in a way to sway the domestic and international opinion in favor of the policies put forward by the communist party of China. Mao made this possible by including censorship of any proscribed views and proper cultivation of the opinions that favored the government. Mao Zedong has been re-known for his continuous application of mass campaigns in a bid to legitimize the state and the policies put forward by the leaders. It was during his era that the Communist Party of China successfully applied the modern mass propaganda techniques in a bid to adapt to the needs of the country that was dominated by rural and illiterate citizens.
Propaganda has been applied by both leaders to stamp their authority and even to convince their most cynical powers and plans through the establishment of a personality cult (Edwards, 2013). Mao's image has been applied in a variety of areas such as books, badges and even posters. This was done to ensure that all citizens in the entire country would believe that he is in no doubt their unchallenged leader. Anna Andrews (2013) argues that, without these ways of spreading the message, Mao would have found it very difficult to control the Chinese population. Mao printed more than two million badges during the Cultural Revolution. The badges demonstrated the revolutionary zeal and allowed the wearers to avoid denunciation and elevate them over their peers. They were also used as an alternative currency for barter trade in exchange for goods and services (Andrews, 2013). This was aimed at ensuring that Mao is envisaged as the undisputed ruler of China. According to Langu (2014), just like how the images of Mao were found everywhere in China during the 1960s, the portraits of the three generations of Kim are found anywhere in North Korea. This also aims at establishing a familiarity with the citizens of North Korea as they identify themselves with Kim Jong-Un as their undisputed leader.
Mao applied propaganda in two main ways, i.e. to eliminate his opponents and to spread out his ideologies. Various forms were used, i.e. the use of posters, party meetings, discussion groups, media and newspapers among others. The China Central Television in 1949 and the People's daily newspaper were used to spread his propaganda. Mao made use of his loyal party workers and other propagandists to spread the communist ideas. Roadside loudspeakers and radio broadcasts programs were used to report the latest successes of the communist regime and reform programs. The communist party ensured control of all the newspapers and communication systems within the country. North Korea on the other hand, under the leadership of Kim Jong-Un, made its debut on the social media platform in 2010. The state launched its website, Facebook page, you tube channel, Twitter account and Flickr page. According to the Korean Central News Agency, the profile picture of all the accounts is the three charters or national reunification and memorial tower.
According to Michael (2014), the Chinese propaganda was applied in various ways. One of the primary goals was to end the temptations that would result in capitalism. It explored both the positive and negative connotations of the ideas that were put forth, i.e. it showed the adverse effects of capitalism and the importance of communism and its benefit to the entire Chinese community. Propaganda was used as a tool to convince the citizens that the Great Leap Forward was going to be a success in China (Michael, 2014). Mao used it as a trick to make the Chinese people believe that he was the right choice for them and would help everyone.
The citizens of both countries are deprived off their economic freedom. According to Langu (2014), everybody officially works for the government either directly or as an SOE. However, North Korea has a more significant black market compared to their counterparts in China.
The existence of a crappy infrastructure. Both countries were colonized and formerly run by native governments that were incompetent and reactionary in their actions. China was never developed initially. Therefore any slight improvements made by Mao Zedong made him the people's hero. Moreover, North Korea used to be more developed is is currently described more accurately as a 'post-apocalyptic' country (Langu, 2014).
Variations also exist on how Mao Zedong and Kim Jong-Un applied liberalism on the leadership strategies. Some of the differences include:
Their application of social freedom. Mao Zedong was not liberal when applying the contemporary western and soviet standards. His application and encouragement on women's liberation, devotion to the society over the families, the abolition of foot binding and romantic marriages were radical for the nation of China at the time. However, modern North Korea is more conservative and dowdy with more mild notions on issues such as "dating" is highly discouraged. At no time was the society repressive as frontier Pakistan, northern India or Southern Afghanistan among others (Langu, 2014).
The uptake and levels of corruption in the two countries at the time of the respective leaders. Application of propaganda ensured control of the corrupt operations in China while it enhanced the shady deals in North Korea. Even though Mao and the Chinese government ruled with an iron hand, they upheld honesty in their operations. They ensured proper utilization of the resources and integrity in the government operations while hailing Mao on the other side. However, North Korea is currently spotted as one of the most corrupt places on earth under the reign of Kim Jong-Un. There is a complete lack of trust in the leadership and official economy of North Korea.
Variation in the economic growth of China and North Korea. Mao's application of propaganda ensured that China's economy grew faster as he ensured that his harebrained schemes do not affect the country's economy negatively as compared to when Zhou Enlai and Liu Shaoqi among others were running the state. However, China was likely to perform better given application of the appropriate policies and adequate investment platforms. On the other hand, North Korea is not performing better economically. According to Zachary (2017), North Korea has invested more of its revenue on the creation of ballistic missiles with the aim of confronting the Americans. Kim Jong-Un is establishing nuclear weapons to use them against the United States.
The concept of racism has been affected by the leaders on different accounts. Mao Zedong ensured that while applying propaganda to gain control of China, the Chinese history and culture are upheld and other peoples' cultures are not denigrated other than their ideologies. Mao was less racial and more cultural in his concepts (Langu, 2014). In contrast, modern North Korea hails the purity of the Korean race and sees other people as being biologically and spiritually inferior with the leadership of Kim Jong-Un. Moreover, he firmly prohibits miscegenation (Zachary, 2017). This is contrary to Mao who was regarded as a historic and transformational leader that helped unite China, a country that had descended into chaos and war for decades. However, on the international arena, he was a rogue leader that would take a cavalier attitude to nuclear war (Zachary, 2017).
Edwards, Anna. "The Power Of Persuasion: How Propaganda Was Used By Mao, Napoleon... And Even For The Green Cross Code." Mail Online. N.p., 2013. Web. 26 Feb. 2018.
Langu. "How Was Mao Zedong's China Similar Or Different To North Korea?." Quora. N.p., 2014. Web. 26 Feb. 2018.
Michael, McCarty. "Propaganda Under Mao Zedong." Effect of propaganda. N.p., 2014. Web. 26 Feb. 2018.
"Propaganda IN MAO's CHINA." IB History - Melanie Ngai. N.p., 2015. Web. 26 Feb. 2018.
Zachary, Keck. "This Nuclear-Armed Leader Was More Terrifying Than Kim Jong-Un." The National Interest. N.p., 2017. Web. 26 Feb. 2018.
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