Meteorology and Myth: The Thunderstorm and Tornado Deities of Japan

UNCP Author/Contributor (non-UNCP co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Dr.. Dennis J. Edgell, Associate Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Pembroke (UNCP )
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Abstract: Folklore and mythology are not to be interpreted as proper history or science fact. There may be scientific reasons why the narrative themes in Japanese folklore persist. Raijin is the god of thunder and lightning, and Fujin is a god of windstorms and tornadoes. Syncretic representation of these sky deities are ubiquitous in Japanese art and cultural landscapes. This presentation will attempt to explain the science link between Japan’s weather and its folklore. Stories such as Raijin’s penchant for eating the navels of children, or why Fujin’s skin is green, have a plausible meteorological explanation. The purpose of this qualitative research is for teaching by stimulating interest and discussion. Learning outcomes including the reinforcement of basic weather science and an appreciation of Japan’s unique culture.

Additional Information

UNCP Research and Creativity Showcase
Language: English
Date: 2019
Geography, Meteorology, Japanese Folklore, Japanese Mythology, Japanese Sky Deities, Japanese Culture

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