Saturday, March 19, 2011

Ghosts in Kwaidon

After briefly touching upon the subject in class, my attitude towards the ghosts is postive. When I think about the ghosts, I must remember that they are, in fact, ghosts and they do not necessarly respond to situations in a manner absolutely similar to the manner in which a human would respond. Considering this fact, I think that the ghosts were good. The ghost in the first story of the black hair had been severely wronged. And though her hair, which in essence was an extention of the ghost herself, seemed to attack her ex-husband, the ghost (during the night) was initially forgiving. Though it was in a physical sense, I also don't think that it was the hair that was attacking the man, but rather his own conscience.

The snow ghost of the second story was extremely compassionate. She saved the boy's life, gave him a happy family, and ultimately spared him and his children at the end of the story. It was the husband's fault that his wife/ghost left at the end; he shouldn't have told the story. The ghosts in Hoichi's story were also good, though they did end up taking Hoichi's ears. They didn't demand much of Hoichi, only that he play his Biwa and recite the stories of their past. It was only when Hoichi tried to fight the ghosts did he encounter problems. And even then, he became a rich man at the end of the story; the ghosts did no real damage. Finally the man in the last story was punished by the ghost for his excessive pride and sense of invincibility. Not until the man tried to kill the ghosts and its messengers did any true harm come to him. In general, the ghosts did not do anything wrong until they themselves were wronged my humans. Their response, though sometimes harsh was warranted and therefore excuseable.

1 comment:

  1. I felt the same way about the ghosts in the first and last stories, but I thought the other two were not so positive. While the snow ghost did a lot for the husband, it seemed to me like she tricked him into telling the story. Also, by leaving she abandoned her kids (which still doesn't make sense how she even had kids) and a husband who cared very much about her. Plus she killed the old man in that cabin for no apparent reason, which made it difficult for me to see her as positive. The ghosts in Hoichi's story were manipulative as they used Hoichi for their own satisfaction. They repeatedly tricked Hoichi into playing for them since he was blind. How did they repay him? When he didn't come willingly, they ripped his ears off. While the snow lady at least was compassionate to the husband, the ghosts in Hoichi's story gave him nothing in return.