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SOUTEIGAI: BEYOND IMAGINATION -Feature on Fukushima -Audio

21 OCTOBER 2012
‘Souteigai’ or ‘beyond imagination’, said the Japanese government spokesman when the tsunami waves rolled across a 300-kilometre-long strip of coastline. ‘Souteigai’ was also the word used in self-justification by nuclear plant owner TEPCO in reference to the meltdown at Fukushima. And ‘Souteigai’ was the thought on people’s minds as they were forced to watch the black water rolling over houses and people and flattening everything – and on the minds of the 80,000 evacuees who lost their homes because of Fukushima.

Malte Jaspersen has lived for 20 years in Kyoto. To the north of the city, there are 13 nuclear reactors. Not least because of this, he wanted to find out how the threefold catastrophe had altered the lives of those affected. He spoke with firemen who had seen unimaginable things, with parents from Fukushima who are trying to protect their children from radioactivity, with anti-nuclear activists, with priests and with people who, in the desolation and devastation of their towns and villages, are starting to rebuild their shattered communities. Since last year, Malte Jaspersen has included a Geiger counter among his household items.

Souteigai is winner of the 2012 Prix Italia President’s Cup, awarded to a radio program dedicated to important current issues.

The original feature was written and produced by Malte Jaspersen in Japanese and German for Deutschlandradio Kultur and the Bayerischer Rundfunk. This English language version of Souteigai was produced for 360documentaries by Nicole Steinke. The sound engineers were Andrei Shabunov and Phillip Ulman.

Japanese poems were written by Matsudaira Meiko and Ikura Chizu. The reader was Naomi Ota. Translations were read by Peter Kowitz (Malte Jaspersen), Asako Izawa, Eden Falk, David Rutledge and Nicole Steinke.

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November 14, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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