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Animating the SpiritedJourneys and Transformations$
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Tze-yue G. Hu, Masao Yokota, and Gyongyi Horvath

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781496826268

Published to University Press of Mississippi: September 2020

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496826268.001.0001

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The “Spiritual” Role of the Media? Heidi, Girl of the Alps in Japan and Korea

The “Spiritual” Role of the Media? Heidi, Girl of the Alps in Japan and Korea

(p.188) The “Spiritual” Role of the Media? Heidi, Girl of the Alps in Japan and Korea
Animating the Spirited

Giryung Park

University Press of Mississippi

This essay focuses on the TV animation Heidi, Girl of the Alps (1974). Made in Japan, it is the most famous international adaptation of the original novel Heidi by the Swiss writer Johanna Spyri. The novel has been translated into many languages and adapted into various media forms—including as a movie, play, animation feature film, television series, cartoon, and picture book. The author surveys the different characteristics and adaptations of the Japan-produced TV animation and its original book publication and argues that progressively, the animated version and its spirited contents have elevated the visual image of Heidi and its original publication. Through studying the audiences in Japan and Korea, the essay speculates on the “spiritual role of the media” in transcending cultural boundaries and discusses the resulting cultural energy that inspires audiences to seek the “spiritual” in connection with their attraction to the animated story.

Keywords:   TV animation, spiritual role of the media, cultural energy, Japan and Korea, Heidi, Girl of the Alps

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