Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio


Apropos of today’s Ditch Tale, I’d like to talk about Pu Songling’s Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio, a set of stories that could easily have fit into the Twilight Zone, except they were originally published in the mid 1700’s. In these stories, a blacksmith hammers on his own penis (to no ill effect), zombies chase merchants, men fall in love with ghostly corpses (because I don’t want to keep using the word zombie), and mystical beings generally fuck (with) eachother until death.

If you wanted something new, spicy, and still somewhat high-brow to read, I strongly suggest finding a copy. The Minford translation is wonderful. If you want a taste of these stories and their complete separation from everything that Westerner’s know about storytelling, have a peek at this:

Also, on a completely unrelated note, have an insane short story that my friend found and brought to my attention:

The Expressionless

Horror is horrible, not gory. Notice the genuinely scary elements: the deformed presentation of a sexualized figure (remember what she has in her mouth?), the random assault, and the irrationality of where she shows up. There’s no way in hell the story is true, but you’ll sure as heck remember it tomorrow.


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