Watching TV in faraway places can be an intimate glimpse into a culture

“There’s no point in traveling to another country if all you do when you get there is sit in your hotel room and stare at the television. At the same time, I’m a fierce proponent of sampling a smidgen of TV wherever you go. I assure you the locals are watching the tube, and it’s worth it to check out what exactly is getting beamed into their living rooms each night. Treat it as a sociological study, and an intimate glimpse into a culture.”
–Seth Stevenson, Grounded: A Down to Earth Journey Around the World (2010)

Posted by | Comments (3)  | June 20, 2011
Category: Travel Quote of the Day

3 Responses to “Watching TV in faraway places can be an intimate glimpse into a culture”

  1. Watching TV in faraway places can be an intimate glimpse into a culture | Travel Guide And Holiday Says:

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  2. Susan Fox Says:

    I’ve learned a lot about Mongol culture by watching tv when I’m at a hotel in UB, especially the music video channel. That’s been a real eye-opener, seeing how they combine the traditional instrumental and vocal forms with western genres like pop and hip hop. I’ve also watched Mongol wrestling matches and shows on horse training and racing, along with the news. I don’t speak the language much yet, but it’s given me a feel for the country that I don’t think I’d get any other way.

    Not to mention that the satellite service brings in broadcasts from at least six countries. American tv is so paultry by comparison.

  3. Mark Tisdale Says:

    My last trip to Mexico I splurged on a hotel room part of the trip. After weeks in the local culture, it was nice to wind down to a little American TV. The fun thing was it was all either subbed or dubbed with Spanish. I especially found the Spanish subtitles turned out to help me piece together some of the words I’d heard. The funniest thing still was realizing that every time someone cursed, instead of translating it, they just put something like “maladiction” – bad word – in the subtitles!

    It’s always fun to spend a few minutes watching the local programming, the news was especially fun to try to guess at what was going on, but without subtitles I’d lose interest fast.