Чжун Куй - бесоед и судья потустороннего мира
The volume contains papers submitted to the international conference ‘Oral Charms in Structural and Comparative Light’ which is to take place on 27–29 October 2011 at the Russian State University for the Humanities (Moscow).
The conference will be devoted to problems of systematization and structural and comparative analysis of charms in different ethnolinguistic traditions, including Slavic, German, and Romance. The following questions were proposed for discussion: geography and history of the charms tradition, distribution of various charm types, possibilities for systematizing national
charms corpora and for creating charms-indexes, charms and analogous verbal forms (Christian prayers and prayer-like charms, apocryphal prayers, curses, etc.), charms in oral and manuscript traditions, magical inscriptions on various objects, medieval amulets with charms in the archaeological record, social functioning of the charm tradition, charms and their performers,
the contribution of the church and clerics to the diffusion of charms, differences between the Catholic and the Protestant churches in this respect, as well as between the Orthodox church and non-Christian confessions, psycho-social sources of suggestion; how do charms work? why are they relevant? practices of ‘charming with words’ in the contemporary society, recording charming acts on video and the relevance of these materials to charm studies.
This article attempts to show that two Chinese tales composed in the ninth century belong to tale type ATU 410. They do not only share main plot elements of ATU 410, but some very specific motifs, too. The authors spent many years in Sichuan which is historically a border region of China. This provided them with the opportunity to come into contact with foreigners and to read texts influenced by Western culture. Later the story was more and more adapted to conform to local traditional texts about the revival of ghostly brides and therefore lost the characteristic features of the tale type.