On t’Brink Again: Hungry Horn

the looping setting on the horn of africa. BAM!
2008 ~9.6 million hungry people (hi food prices), 3.25 million affected by drought.
2001 ~over 12 million people in Ethio, Eritrea needing urgent aid within drought.
1984 ~ 5-7 million affected with very high death rate: drought/delayed response/war.
read more.

it’s worse than the last time…they say…

i did something last time.

i wonder if i will again.

having experienced being at one of the sites they always show on news clips of people collecting food, i am intrigued by how news stories depict the scene…
here’s a pre-commentary, pre-news-edit video, part of the world food programme press release on the drought…

the bareness of the video was chilling to watch. but specifically, watching it in detached mode, i could think of a million ways someone could cut and paste this to make it ‘news worthy’. now, take that little snip with naked emaciated kids with bloated bellies, children collecting grains from the dust.
this piece of material could make a bang…yes, it is indeed as bad as 1984. yes, indeed this is the condition of the horn. sad reality that it is…

at the risk of viewers dismissing the news piece scoffing ‘ahhh…yea…didn’t they have that show on last nite? that infomercial about giving money to feed starving babies?’ the ‘pity-worthy-ness’ to a lesser degree, and the creative spin to a greater degree. these could be the uumph that can compete with other news pieces for the front page, the headline, the breaking news…and prove the point this is indeed comparable to 1984. the always-ness of africa. take a look!

i wonder.
what could be going through the camera person’s mind while they’re recording it? or the producers’ in thinking about what appeals to his audience? what kinda agenda/bias do they bring by editing?
relaying the urgency of the situation, the need for response…a successful news story that reaches the front page…tv superstandome?? i guess good news, is no news…

but really… what of the things that fall through the cracks. that wouldn’t bolster stereotypes…
a cultural value system and context lost in translation? like…respect and reverence of food in that it shouldn’t be wasted. Proverb: “migib kibur new”/”food is to be revered.” This presumes all food is not to be wasted unless it has been contaminated irreversibly…
Also, there may be different conceptions of contamination and germs…and an integrated perception of food-and nature…along with different ideas on ‘wastefulness’ ‘food’ ‘materialism’….’cleanliness’…
an understanding of these things make the scene with kids scrambling for grains on the sandy ground less dramatic.

Edit. Edit. Edit.

the construction of recent history
…versus a recording of the past…

About these ads

One thought on “On t’Brink Again: Hungry Horn

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s