Sam Rousso and Jon Banfill discuss Pu Songling's Strange Tales From A Chinese Studio.
These tales were collected and composed in the early Qing dynasty.
There are two types of stories in the collection. Chaunqi, or, "tales of the marvelous," are long and lyrical, often romantic tales. These are the stories most associated with this collection in popular culture. Films such as A Chinese Ghost Story and the current summer blockbuster in China, Painted Skin 2, are based on these tales.
The other type of story is known as Zhiguai. These are brief (sometimes only a couple paragraphs) and straightforward accounts of strange happenings, perhaps supernatural but often times not.
Today Jon and I discuss two brief accounts- one is from the book and one is something that happened a couple months ago.
This video contains material of a mildly adult nature and may not be appropriate to watch at work.
This is the edition referenced and read from in the video:
Pu Songling. Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio. Trans. John Minford. London: Penguin Books, 2006.
I highly recommend reading not only the stories in this edition but the rich and informative essays and notes that Minford has prepared. They are a wonderful jumping off point for studies of these stories.
The opening song is a lovely midi cover of the theme to A Chinese Ghost Story from angelfire.com/ok/francisyeow/midi8.html.
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