A speedy capitalist capital separated from nuclear-armed and impoverished North Korea by a Demilitarized Zone. After rocket-speed growth, then a near financial meltdown, the economy is precarious. The young compete to find decent jobs. Koreans in America are competitive, too, seeking out the best opportunities in business, education and lifestyles. Some retain deep ties to South Korea.
Video Reports from Japan and America. In Okinawa, once an independent kingdom, pay is low, jobs are few and many are angry about a liberation that's turned into an endless American military occupation. For Okinawans in America, many feel a desire to stay tied to their roots.
Ten video reports about Japanese and Japanese Americans on both sides of the Pacific. As Tokyo passes through a moment of political and social confusion, a new generation prepares to confront the world with less. From love to labor, they fashion new ways to cope. In San Francisco, the old take solace in their culture.
Monzen-Nakaka Cho – Mon-Naka to the locals - lies low, laced by canals that flow into Tokyo Bay. It's a refuge from the formality of central Tokyo. And it typifies Japan's sense of drift: fewer children, dying businesses, and flagging faith.
As China's capital takes on a modern look, current and former residents sense a new dynamism -- and new tensions -- in the old city. This series of intimate reports looks at the challenges and choices faced by Beijing's ordinary people.
Separated by the Pacific Ocean, linked by cultural roots, nurtured by generations of migration and interchange, people in America and China consider new answers to old questions: Which society is more modern? More competitive? More comfortable? These are stories of ordinary people who follow their values on personal journeys that are wholesome, joyous and distressing.
Some of India's people are hemmed in by prejudice, then liberated by their songs or the dignity of their work. Disappointments are a given. So are small triumphs. For those who came to America, this tension between prejudice and liberation echoes.
Cultural expression is key across Latin America. These are looks at contemporary artists in the midst of edgy political environments -- from Mexico to Chile and Brazil to Venezuela to Nicaragua.
Glimmers of parallel lives lived in Phnom Penh and in a low-income housing complex called Park Village in Stockton, California. More than 30 years after the Khmer Rouge plunged Cambodia into a spasm of brutality, disease and starvation, the survivors and their children are moving on. These 10 interactive news features look at ordinary people -- from a monk in California to a fisherman on the Mekong.
By Kim Perry. The profile of China's elderly is beginning to change -- especially in the cities -- as life spans increase and more people live apart from their children. New ways to house the elderly range from private retirement homes to converted schools. In Shanghai, the traditional extended family with three generations living under one roof may become just an ideal of the past.
By Nagomi Onda. Shanghai typifies the complex relationship between China and Japan that is often called politically cold but economically hot. Despite anti-Japanese demonstrations on the streets this year, and calls to boycott Japanese goods, many Chinese make money by running or working for businesses that cater to Japanese.
By Jonathan Kaminsky. With the new mobility in China, millions of farmers from across the nation have headed to the cities to find work and build better lives. Many men with construction skills contribute their labor to rebuild Shanghai. They earn more than they could at in the countryside, but they know they could never afford to move into the highrises they build.
By Joe Mullin. Millions of residents of central Shanghai have been resettled in far off districts as part of a sweeping plan to remake their city. Those who resist eviction find themselves with few legal options, and too little compensation. This is the story of a neighborhood on Fengyang Road marked for demolition, and what happened to one man who fought to stay.
Courtesy of Joe Mullin. Individual and group protests over land use have snowballed across China as officials and private developers have carried out evictions. Sun Dalun shot this footage on the day he was forcibly evicted from the house in the heart of Shanghai where his family had lived for three generations.
By Carrie Ching. When the Vietnam War ended and U.S. troops pulled out of Southeast Asia 30 years ago, they left behind more than 100,000 mixed-race children fathered by GIs. Now this generation of Amerasians has reached adulthood, and many are seeking to reconcile with their American fathers before it's too late. In Thailand, Ancharee Nakket travels back into the shadows of her past to examine the boundaries of race, nationality, and love.
By Adam Raney: After Argentina’s devalauation more than two years ago, Argentine-made goods became more affordable at home and abroad. The fashion industry is benefiting from a low peso as well as government support. Ezequiel and Viviana Toledo, a brother and sister design team, dream of succeeding in Argentina’s booming fashion industry
By Daniel Moulthrop: Some Argentine factory workers have overcome the country's staggering unemployment crisis by forming work cooperatives in bankrupt and shuttered factories. These cooperatives have changed the workers' lives and now, they may be changing Argentine law.
By Adam Shemper and Wang Feng: Taiwanese citizens discuss their views on relations with mainland China as Taiwan prepares for the presidential election.
By Wang Feng: As many as 200,000 Chinese women have emigrated to Taiwan and married Taiwanese men. The Taiwanese have worked hard to forge an identity separate from China, and some fear that these strangers from the mainland could one day become a potent political force.
By Jason Felch and Chris Raphael: The Camisea pipeline has made life difficult for many of the Machiguenga villages in its path. In one community, villagers have blamed the pipeline for scaring away the animals they used to hunt, landslides, and contaminated water.
By Jason Felch and Chris Raphael: In Segakiato, the Camisea gas project has created both hope and skepticism. One young villager, Wilfredo, who works for the project, buys radios and new clothes with his company paycheck. But Wilfredo's grandmother, a traditional Machiguenga woman, is worried about the changes she sees in her grandson and in her community.
By Chris O'Connell: Like thousands of other international high tech migrants, Guillame Gravile lost his H1B visa status after the collapse of the Internet bubble. Known affectionately by his American friends as "Frenchy," Gravile is unable to find a company that will hire him and sponsor him for a new visa and must return to France.
By Susan Latham: In the last twenty years more than 20,000 refugees have emigrated from Southeast Asia to Oakland, California. Today, many of these first generation immigrants are living on the fringe of society, partially because they lack language skills, but also because it's been so hard for them to adjust to life in America. Nguyen Tran, a 36 year-old social worker, has dedicated her life to helping refugees.
By Rosa Yum: Artist Flo Oy Wong grew up with two families: a real one and a "paper family," an elaborate deception constructed to elude U.S. immigration restrictions of the early 1900s. Like thousands of Chinese-Americans, Wong lived in constant fear of discovery and deportation. Now, in her art, she explores the culture of shame and subterfuge that permeated Chinatown then and still influences the community today.
By Scott Squire: At the age of two, Ana Maria Dragin was abandoned on the streets of Bucharest, Romania. She would likely have ended up languishing in an orphanage, had she not been taken in by a kindly family stretching their means to care for her, and then later adopted by Berkeley psychologist Nadine Payn.
By Mielikki Org: Parachute kids are Taiwanese kids growing up in the United States whose parents (one or both) have decided to stay in Taiwan to do business. A 1990 UCLA study estimated that there were 40,000 Taiwanese parachute kids ages 8 to 18 living in the United States. This video focuses on two parachute kids living in San Jose, CA--teenagers with access to large amounts of cash and relatively little adult supervision.
By Wang Feng: Members of the Korean American community in the San Francisco Bay Area express their concerns for the political and military tensions between the United States and North Korea, and the possible impact on their lives.
By Casey McKinney: Following a barrage of media attention on the SARS outbreak in Hong Kong and parts of Asia, predominantly Asian communities in the United States suffered economically from consumer fear and misunderstanding about the local threat of the disease. In San Franisco's Chinatown, tour guide Shirley Fong-Torres and others relate their business woes.
By Steven Fyffe: Hamid Ali Sayadi, a Kurd born in Northern Iraq, now is an American living in Fremont, Calif. Sayadi was a mechanic in the Iraqi airforce before he fled to America in 1977 to escape Saddam Hussein's regime. In California, he has worked for 13 years at New United Motor Manufacturing Inc., a joint venture between Toyota and General Motors.
By Rosa Yum: The sense of family is still very strong in Japan, and those living in smaller cities and towns suffer most as career opportunities attract the young and the bold, leaving behind the elderly to take care of themselves. This video is the story of one family's dilemma of supporting their children's decision and the subtle yearning to have them close by.
By Chris O'Connell: The World World II atomic bomb attack on Nagasaki left more than 70,000 dead and more than 100,000 survivors nursing their wounds. Today, it is almost impossible to detect the human toll. The houses have been rebuilt, scars hidden beneath shirts, and the dead buried long ago. This video explores how the bomb is still affecting the lives of people in Nagasaki almost 57 years after it exploded.
By Steven Fyffe: The dam across the Isahaya Bay was supposed to protect the bay area from floods and create farmland. But since the dam closed its gates in 1997, scientists and fisherman say much of the famously rich sea-life has been dying in large numbers. The video focuses on the fisherman of Kyushu and how they are learning to cope after their livellihoods have been destroyed.
These stories were produced by reporters in the "Digital TV and the World" special project at the Graduate School of Journalism, University of California, Berkeley. According to project director Todd Carrel, the digital journalists travel the world to "find interesting stories that help reveal the fabric of a community." The series began in August 2002 with stories about ordinary people -- from a fishing village near Nagasaki, to the rainforests of Peru, to the streets of Phnom Penh.
The Center for Digital TV and the World, a project of the Tides Center in San Francisco, is supported by major gifts from The Skirball Foundation and the The Henry Luce Foundation. Additional support for reporting projects has been provided by UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism, Institute of East Asian Studies, Office of Resources for International Studies, Center for Chinese Studies, Center for Japanese Studies, Center for Korean Studies and Latin American Studies, and ANA, Sony, Apple, the Japan United States Friendship Commission, the United States Japan Foundation, Pacific Century Institute, the East-West Center in Honolulu, The Chatterjee Charitable Trust, Manuel and Geraldine Chavez, Steve Silberstein, Walter and Elise Haas Foundation and others.