Category Archives: Rituals, festivals, holidays


Ghosts of the Mind

Context While ghosts and other supernatural forces are often the centerpiece of creation stories, what if there was a creation story for ghosts themselves? Two related stories from two different cultures––Voodoo and Native American traditions––are explored here, portraying the mysterious mind as an influential character that interacts with ghosts. The Voodoo story shows how just… Continue Reading »

The Golden Arm

Context The story of The Golden Arm is a folktale dating back 200 years, originally conceived to discourage greediness. Mark Twain famously performed this ghost story, sometimes didactically as a way to teach the skill of storytelling. Importantly, the legend of The Golden Arm is an orally-told story. It is performed theatrically via word-of-mouth and… Continue Reading »

Ghost Story in Primary School

Background: The interviewer and the informant went to the same primary school together in Qingdao, China. Interview asks the informant to retell a horror story that was very popular in their primary school.  Informant: So next to the gate there was this statue of a woman, she’s playing a harp. And a long time ago… Continue Reading »