Bathroom As Horror: Here There Be Tygers by Stephen King

Toilets are inherently scary. This holds true across cultures, even though different cultures (and even genders) experience public toilets differently. Below I take a look at a short horror story by Stephen King with a few examples of toilet horror by other authors, in which the public bathroom is utilised for storytelling purposes as a……

The Symbolism of Water Wells

Henry John Yeend King - By the Well

In folklore and fairy tale, round, enclosed structures (towers and wells) align with lunar figures which stand in for cyclic time i.e. dragons, serpents, werewolves or other related creatures who abduct maidens. And also, by the way, dishevelled hair and shaggy furs worn as garments are the other symbol set which go hand-in-hand with round,……

U.F.O. In Kushiro by Haruki Murakami Short Story Analysis

“U.F.O. in Kushiro” is a short story written by popular contemporary Japanese author Haruki Murakami. English readers first had access to the story in 2001, when it appeared in an issue of the New Yorker magazine. It was republished in 2011 after an earthquake and tsunami devastated northern Japan. Safe to say this is considered a……

Chinoiseries and Picture Books Analysis

Illustrators of fairy tales frequently choose styles that evoke the periods of history not particularly related to the tales but that they perceive to share the values they find in the tales.Perry Nodelman, Words About Pictures Children’s picture books draw from a great number of traditions. One of those is ‘chinoiseries’, a European mimicry of……

My Neighbour Totoro Storytelling

My Neighbour Totoro (1988), from Japan’s Studio Ghibli, is one of the few genuinely child centred films in existence. In contrast, most films out of DreamWorks and Pixar contain dual levels of meaning, including jokes only the adult co-viewer will understand, or emotional layers inaccessible to children. For instance, in Toy Story 3 Andy says……

The Weirdness of Yotsuba&! by Kiyohiko Azuma

The other day someone in a book recommendation group wanted suggestions for a 10 year old who loves Hayao Miyazaki movies. This basically describes my own kid, who’s been a Miyazaki fan since the age of three, before she even knew transmogrification wasn’t a thing. My kid enjoys Yotsuba&! (among other things, so I recommended……

Wolf Children Japanese Anime Film Study

The Japanese anime Wolf Children is an inspiring and engaging film for miniature nature lovers. I have recommended this film to people completely forgetting that it is basically a very sad story though, so consider yourself warned! I wonder if the author of Wolf Children was inspired by the story of Amala and Kamala, two……

The Girl Who Leapt Through Time

Time travel! Romance! Japan! If you love the films out of Studio Ghibli you’ll love The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, too. ARC PHRASE An arc word/phrase is also known as a ‘leitwort’, which literally means ‘lead word’. In order to be an arc phrase and not just a catch phrase the phrase must help……