History and Myth

Old CBPS badges.

There is a new animated film of the life of ultra-famous poet Li Bai.  You can read this review and watch the Chinese trailers 1 & 2.  I hope they do an English version.  The film’s title is Chang ‘An, the capital of Tang China.  Li Bai wrote A Poem of Chang ‘An about a wife’s yearning for her distant husband.  Interesting discussion of another translation.

The Old Hag of the Lonely House, Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, Minneapolis Institute of Art

Rather less historically accurate, the Investiture of the Gods story is pretty bizarre, featuring many Daoist adepts with supernatural powers, plus the appalling tyrant King Zhou – he of the “Wine Pool and Meat Forest”.  I have been listening to this tale in the appealing Chinese Lore podcast, and there is also a film of it.

Interesting article on the role of mythology in Chinese culture.

Japanese mythology is also very colourful: podcast about artist Yoshitoshi‘s illustrations of heroes and ghosts.