I couldn’t find a credit for this photo but it sure piqued my curiosity. Having a healthy respect for cross-cultural differences, my inclination here is to not to trust my typical response. Remember how confounded domestic media was, for example, by all the public displays of weeping after Il died? It would be easy, for example, to think that this photo somehow got away from the censors and that what we’re seeing is a more unguarded response to living under dictatorship in dire straights. On the other hand, though, there is this comment I pulled out of the mile-long discussion thread on irreverent site that posted the photo from a reader named Rakel Jiang Qing:
This photo is actually full of feelings. If you really adore something or someone really much, when you meet this person it is very common that you cry because… well, what can you do? They ARE happy when they stand there.
People cried in the Beatles’ presence, too.
Update (via linkglobal blog): This image of KJU visiting a family went viral after being posted to Reddit on Monday, due to the contrast in facial expressions (the family were of course emotional at meeting the leader rather than being upset to see him, as some netizens worried). | Photo: KCNA (the state news association)