Japan on BBC news!?

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Jun 20, 2011 17:02
I'm in the UK, and I saw the videos of the devastating earthquakes and tsunami on 11th March mostly on BBC news web sites.
The videos were so dreadful that I was depressed after watching them for a couple of days, even though my family and friends were safe.
It was a tough experience to see my own country being devastated while I was in a foreign country.

By the way, apart from the disaster itself, those videos looked quite surreal to me.
It was the fact that BBC news were reporting 'Japan'.

Why was it surreal?
Because I had hardly ever seen BBC reporting news of Japan.

Indeed, I felt as though Japan hadn't existed in English spoken world at all.
Wait, we have sushi, hello kitty, TOYOTA, and CANON in the UK, don't we?
But still none of them actually doesn't tell anything about what Japan is like.
We can see the stuff from Japan in the UK, but the country, Japan, seems as though it were an imaginary world or something.
I knew Japan should exist because I came from there, but I felt like English language cannot describe the culture and life in there.
As soon as you try to tell about the country in English, the whole reality of the country would vanish.
I felt that Japan was 'almost invisible' in English.

Tokyo shown in the film 'Lost in Translation' may be a good example.
The film was very well shot, and it's realistic.
At the same time, the Tokyo in the film described in English looked like an imaginary world, as if the city was trying to escape from the camera so that only a trace of the city was shot.

But in those videos reporting the aftermath of the tsuhami, many BBC reporters were describing the devastation of the coast area in British English every day, which was somehow surprising to me.
They can speak about Japan in English!
I felt as though something impossible had been going on.

Still I wondered how many of those BBC reporters had visited Japan before the earthquake and actually had reported news, because virtually none of them spoke Japanese to conduct interviews.
Perhaps all they knew about real Japan could be the aftermath, couldn't it?

The tsunami made Japan pop up in English world for a short while, but the effect seemed to have worn off by now...