With the rise of globalization and the popularity of satellite TV and on-line shows, audiences are able to sample programmes that are produced all over the world. This means that the world appears to have become smaller as viewers are transported to Brazil through soap operas and to the USA for sitcoms or to England for football matches.
For those unfortunate people who are unable to travel, this type of entertainment allows them to pick up other languages, learn about other people’s lifestyles, see how traditional food is cooked and gain general knowledge about geography and culture. So in this respect, multi-culturalism is promoted and accepted.
Naturally a countries culture is affected by exposure to foreign programmes. Teenagers listen to rap music and dress like American hip-hop artists. Slang and swear words seep into the local language alarming linguists. Violence and nudity are popular in films made abroad and viewers absorb these scenes. Bored housewives start adopting the habits of stars in cheap soap operas. In general, what locals watch from abroad becomes the accepted norm and overshadows domestic values and morals. Some aspects of a foreign culture that are imitated might be contradictory to local customs.
In my opinion, foreign programmes are an opportunity for a country to introduce its culture and lifestyle to others. Unfortunately television is a powerful medium and subconsciously has the ability to influence a person’s choices and behaviour. It is perhaps for this reason that some people fear that it is harmful to local culture.
Question taken from Cambridge Instant IELTS p.92
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