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Japanese Myths, Folktales, Folklore and Language


A Delightful Dive into Meiji Era Yokai News (Ep. 137)

Today I’m going to do something a little different, again. I’m going to give you some real yōkai and paranormal news. Not current news, but stories that were actually published in newspapers during the late 1800s — and not in tabloids either, but in regular ol’ papers. And they are absolutely delightful to read.
Meiji era yokai news

The Dreaded Northern Pillow (kitamakura) and Fan Death (Ep. 136)

Is sleeping with your head facing north a practice that'll bring you bad luck and invite death or is it good luck, welcoming a restful night's sleep and money?
Reclining Buddha statue with radiant halo, symbolic of peace, resting on a colorful pillow facing north, with an artistic backdrop of mountains, representing the Japanese kitamakura myth

“The Other Side” A Creepy Japanese Ghost Story (Ep. 135)

"The Other Side" is a ghost story I wrote using some of the more common Japanese scary tropes. Put on some headphones and turn out the lights and let me tell you a story.

Creepy Haunted Tunnels in Japan (Ep. 134)

My guess is that Japan has more haunted tunnels than anywhere in the world. In this episode I talk about three of the creepiest and most well known.
A tunnel with a light at the end, representing hope and new beginnings. Or maybe not. It could be haunted.

Okiku: The Haunted Doll (Ep. 133)

The Okiku-chan doll is believed to contain the spirit of the little girl who once owned her. This is seen by her constantly, slow growing hair.
A haunted Japanese doll named Okiku, with long black hair and a traditional Japanese kimono.
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About The Uncanny Japan Podcast

Speculative fiction writer, long-term resident of Japan and Bram Stoker Award finalist Thersa Matsuura explores all that is weird from old Japan—strange superstitions, folktales, cultural oddities, and interesting language quirks. These are little treasures she digs up while doing research for her writing.

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