Diana Farah Dubai
More than 7,500 Arabic copies of Japanese Niponica magazines have been distributed to 15 different Japanese embassies and offices in the Arab world, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said.
Niponica magazines are distributed by MOFA to Japanese embassies worldwide.
The magazines are used in Japanese language schools to teach students the language by comparing the Arabic copies to the Japanese ones, revealed MOFA.
“We receive a lot of favorable feedback from the Arab World,” MOFA said.
The magazines are relevant to all age groups due to the large amount of pictures included in the publications, making it simple for anyone to read and understand.
The publications introduce Japanese culture and “share the way of thinking that lies behind Niponica,” it added.
“We hope that introducing the idea underlying each cultural piece will foster a feeling of empathy and intimacy among people in the world,” MOFA said.
The magazines include stories on topics such as traditional Japanese theater, customs, fashion, technologies and food.
“We make sure to keep a balance of different stories so that Niponica can provide information on every aspect of Japan,” MOFA explained.
According to the Japanese ministry, the magazines are available in many museums and venues during events such as Japanese cultural fairs.
MOFA explained that there is more room for foreign people’s understanding about Japan, so the Japanese government started to publish Niponica as a tool to introduce the country’s society and culture to the world.
The magazines provide a view and balance of both modern and traditional Japanese cultures.
Speaking about the Japan and the Middle East’s relations, MOFA said that the Japanese government hopes the distribution of Arabic copies of Niponica could possibly stimulate an interest among young Arabs.
“It might bring about more interaction between the Middle East and Japan, which could be a step to bring us closer,” he said.
Niponica magazines are published three times a year, in Japanese and six other languages including English, Arabic, and Spanish.
Hard copies can be found in libraries or at Japanese embassies around the world. They can also be downloaded through Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.