Education About Asia: Online Archives

Kamishibai, Japanese Storytelling: The Return of An Imaginative Art

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Many older Japanese have pleasant memories of the neighborhood storyteller whose tales of adventure
and noble deeds brightened the lives of children everywhere in Japan. American children can now enjoy this imaginative activity. Kamishibai (paper drama) is a traditional form of Japanese storytelling that uses large color pictures to accompany a dramatic narration. This type of storytelling is enjoying a renaissance in Japan and has recently become available in English for use in schools and at home. The narratives are written in both Japanese (hiragana) and English.