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Japanese Demon Lore: Oni from Ancient Times to the Present
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Japanese Demon Lore: Oni from Ancient Times to the Present

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  30 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Oni, ubiquitous supernatural figures in Japanese literature, lore, art, and religion, usually appear as demons or ogres. Characteristically threatening, monstrous creatures with ugly features and fearful habits, including cannibalism, they also can be harbingers of prosperity, beautiful and sexual, and especially in modern contexts, even cute and lovable. There has been mu ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published September 30th 2010 by Utah State University Press
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Oct 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
A great literary and media analysis of the oni phenomenon from its birth as mythology to its insertion into popular culture. Charting the warp and weft of what kind of identity oni were assigned, the author also ends up charting Japan's evolving relationship with its own mythology.
Oct 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
A scholarly overview of the oni phenomenon from the earliest records to its presence in modern entertainment media. It's both comprehensive and concise, so that it leaves you with the feeling you've gained a thorough understanding of oni despite being a short book with less than 200 pages. One star must be withheld however since the writing is extremely dry and at times it feels more like reading a master thesis than a book intended for the general public. Particularly the segments where the aut ...more
Sep 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
I started this book because the title and summary sounded like a good introduction to the topic of Oni in Japanese folklore, legend, religion and fiction/pop culture.
Well, I am not sure whether it was, since it doesn't just target specific legends and summarizes them for the readers but it does the same with certain examples of anime as well and I am not sure whether it was necessary. However it does sound like the author knew what she was writing about for the most part and what she wrote about
Apr 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Noriko Reider's study of the oni in Japanese folklore and art is a history of the marginalized 'other' in Japanese society and consciousness. Woven from the disparate threads of Chinese, Buddhist, and indigenous Japanese cosmologies, Reider's illustrative discussions demonstrate how the mythical oni's multiple origins and conceptions have been repeatedly juxtaposed and recombined throughout Japanese history in cultural productions ranging from pseudo-historical Imperial annals to kabuki theater, ...more
Jul 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
More academic in tone than I usually like, and contains a surprisingly large number of copyediting errors, but the content is fascinating, and the bibliography has TONS of other good resources on oni, youkai, demons, and the whole concept of "other" in Japanese culture, both historically and in modern times. Absolutely a must-read for those interested in Japan, culture, folklore/fairy tales, history, and literature.
Miranda Ro
Jan 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Great book. Great author. Very informative and engaging.
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Feb 09, 2014
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Ebblibs Thekstein
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