Enrolled in English 102

This spring semester I have enrolled in English 102. The focus of the class will be emploring the intersection of the individual and one’s community.
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Plastic surgery blamed for making all Miss Korea contestants look alike

It’s an established fact that South Korea has one of, if not the highest rate of plastic surgery per capita in the entire world, and a Japanese blog covering South Korean topic recently wondered out loud if the phenomenon hasn’t unintentionally turned the country’s Miss Korea beauty pageant into a clone parade.

More at GAWKER.

How she escaped North Korea


Park Ji Woo was born in North Korea and escaped with her mother when she was 9 years old. Today Park is 24 and studies English in New York City.

I was born in North Ham-Gyong province, North Korea, which is located in the far northeast of the country. It is extremely cold in winter. When the North Korean food distribution system collapsed in the early 1990s, my father, who was a doctor and the breadwinner for my family, couldn’t bring us food anymore.


Porn identification officer in China


A non-governmental Chinese organization called simply “Safety Alliance” is on the lookout for a “Chief Pornography Identification Officer.” According to ChinaSmack, the group describes itself as a “neutral and impartial third-party organization, establishing industry standards for internet safety, improving China’s internet usage environment, protecting netizens’ internet rights and interests.”

More at The Daily Dot.

China’s Communist party isn’t really afraid of the internet

china internet

Earlier this week, a Chinese propaganda official said China’s internet-based “new media” were threatening the Communist party. Using one of Mao Zedong’s most famous phrases, Ren Xianliang, vice-minister of propaganda in Shaanxi province, wrote in an editorial (link in Chinese): “Just as political power grows out of the barrel of a gun, the Party’s control of the media is an unassailable basis of the party’s leadership.”

More at the QUARTZ.