Having listened to your initial proposals for the video workshop this semester, I think it is fitting to name this semester’s theme, “Modern Folklore.” Folklore is a narrative expression of a certain perspective, idea, or feeling within a culture. Fairy Tales, folktales, and children’s literature are all examples of folklore. Often fantastic, magical, and surreal elements form a part of the narrative. The “Modern” part of “Modern Folklore,” would at first seem to be in opposition to folklore, understood as part of traditional culture. The modern is often thought of as the end of traditional culture, marking the era of science and technology. In other words, the modern suggests an ideal or utopia that is never really achieved but is regularly alluded to as a goal for humanity.

So the juxtaposition of the Modern and the Folklore raises the question, what is the folklore of today? What I would like you to do with your videos this semester is produce a story of modern folklore. You can set a traditional work of Chinese folklore in a contemporary Macau setting or you can use folkloric elements, such as the fantastic and the supernatural to help tell your own stories. This theme allows you to mix genres and styles to achieve a story that expresses some truth about life in contemporary Macau. Again, I encourage you to write about the world around you.

We will discuss this theme and your current story ideas in class this week. Here are a couple of wikipedia entries to get you started thinking about incorporating this theme into your stories. First the wikipedia entry for folklore and then the entry for chinese folklore. I will also post a few examples that I hope will inspire you.

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