Marañon, Peru, has reactivated its transmitter on
The station was heard on 8 Dec, 2001, at 0940, with sign
on announcements, including a station identification.
Later some nice Peruvian folk music, advertisements and
a canned identification at top of the hour. Good signal
strength with s9 peaks in Nashville in southern USA.
Hodgson, USA, hcdx list, 8 Dec 2001
Marañon, 4834.9 kHz, was well heard in 1993, inactive
most of 1994, and active again from February to September
Klemetz, Sweden, DXLD, 15 Dec 2001
Marañon in 1994
Peruvian stations in the tropical bands tend to come and
go with the seasons, so it's not that big of a deal when one
reactivates, But I've been pleased to hear Radio Marañon
once again active on 4835 kHz in the morning. They sign-on
at 1000 and can be heard with local announcements and huaynos
until Guatemalan powerhouse Radio Tezulutlan comes on, usually
at 1100, Radio Marañon is one of several Catholic-run
grass-roots stations in Peru, such as Radio Quillabamba, which
I featured in the 2/91 column (available through the NASWA
reprints service). I've dug out my copy of "Radio y Comunicacion
Popular en el Peru" and looked up the chapter on Radio
Marañon to see what it had to say. The chapter was written
by Jose Luis P. Maldonado, a Jesuit who worked there when
this book was published in 1987.
Radio Marañon is located in the town of Jaen in the
northern part of Cajamarca Department, not far from the Ecuadorian
border. As noted above, this is a Roman Catholic station and
is owned by the Archbisopic of Jaen. The coverage area includes
a lot of towns familiar to DXers , such as Huancabamba, Chota,
Cutervo, Bagua, and Rioja. It is not these towns, however,
but rather the rural areas around them that Radio Marañon
directs its programming to. The station's principal objective
is educating the campesinos, or rural peasants, in the hinterlands
where the Andes mountains meet the Amazon jungle. Radio Marañon
has little competition for the listenership of the campesinos.
The commercial stations in the region all aim their programming
at the people in the towns, since that's who has the money
to buy their advertisers' products. Studies by Radio Marañon
have shown that the campesinos sometimes listen to shortwave
stations from Ecuador and Colombia for their music, but that
doesn't detract too much from the station's listenership.
Radio Marañon tries to keep in constant contact with
its audience, which is not an easy feat when the listeners
are scattered across a large area and most of the roads are
little more than dirt tracks. But priests who travel from
village to village saying mass also talk with the villagers
about their lives and problems and how Radio Marañon's programming
serves them. This information is fed back to the station.
Periodic courses are given in Jaen for lay leaders, and when
they come to town station staff listen to what they have to
say. And, of course, there are listeners' letters. We might
sometimes think that stations get overloaded with DX reports,
but stations like Radio Marañon may get a hundred local letters
for every DX report!
Education of the campesino is the guiding principal
behind all of Radio Marafion's programming. But the station
staff understand that education is not just learning facts.
An important aspect of the programming is teaching the peasants
critical thinking skills and helping them understand their
role and theirculture's role in the world around them. In
fact, shortly after getting started the station got a first
hand look at the peasants' lack of critical thinking skills
when it first polled listeners on which programs they most
liked or thought were most useful and those they least liked.
The results were that every program was liked equally well
and was equally useful!
So, what kind of programming does Radio Marañon broadcast?
As with other Latin American stations aiming for a rural orsmall
town audience, the main listening times are around sunrise
and sundown, which is when the campesinos are most likely
to be around their radios. The morning broadcast focuses on
education with news, information on growing various crops,
and brief lessons in Peruvian history, geography, nutrition,
sociology, physics, and the Bible, among otherthings. Traveling
priests distribute free notebooks for listeners to use while
listening to these broadcasts. Most educational programs are
repeated later in the day for those who might miss them in
News is considered especially important at Radio Marañon
and there is a daily fifty minute newscast as well as several
shorter ones. Good newscasts are seen as another way to educate
the listeners and help them form opinions of the world around
them, and should be devoid of the sensationalism and factual
manipulation sometimes found in small station newscasts in
Latin America. For international news, the station daily monitors
Spanish newscasts from the BBC Radio Netherlands, Deutsche
Welle, and the Voice of America. For timely national news
they listen to Peruvian stations in the large cities; other
news is taken from national newspapers, which arrive in Jaen
several days after being printed. Finally, for local items,
Radio Marañon has over two hundred volunteer correspondents
in its target are who send periodic reports of their local
new and events. With inadequate transportation and postal
services, these reports take day or even weeks to arrive,
but fortunately most are not overly time-sensitive.
Among other special programs on Radio Marañon are "Encuentro",
which addresses social issues, such as hygiene, delinquency,
honor, respect for the aged, etc, "Mesa Redonda" where station
staff, church and community leaders debate local issues, and
"Personajes" which each week looks at the life of either a
famous Peruvian, or a famous individual in the history of
the Catholic church. "Radiola" is the program where listeners
can send greetings and messages to one another, as is commonly
done in Latin American radio. Music programs include folk
music in the early morning and romantic and pop music later
in the day. Although Radio Marañon is a religious station,
the staff realize that most of the listeners would be bored
by strong doses of religious programming, so religion is restricted
to a few brief prayers and Bible verses throughout the day.
The exception, of course, is Sunday, when there are several
lengthy programs of religious instruction plus two broadcasts
of mass from the Cathedral.
So, pull yourself out of bed some morning (hi!) and give Radio
Marañon a try!
Radio, February 1994