Ghost Stories in Japanese Schools


Ghost Stories in Japanese Schools, Amidst the glitter of colorful and innovative Japanese popular culture, there is one aspect that creeps beneath the surface: “kowai,” a Japanese word that refers to anything scary and spooky. Kowai includes urban legends, ghost stories, and myths that have influenced the Japanese imagination for centuries. In this article, we will explore the world of kowai, which is popular among Japanese school students, and how this urban legend lives on in modern popular culture.

One of the most famous urban legends that is feared by students in Japanese schools is Hanako. “Hanako” or “Hanako-san” is one of the famous urban legends in Japan. The story of Hanako-san is often told to children and teenagers as part of the scary stories circulating in schools. The following is a story about Hanako-san:

The Most Popular Ghost Stories in Japanese Schools

The story about Hanako-san

The most famous Japanese school ghost story is Hanako. Hanako-san is a girl’s ghost who is said to live in the school toilet. The stories about Hanako-san vary depending on the region and school where the story is told. However, there are several common elements that appear frequently in these stories.

According to the story, if someone goes to the school toilet and calls Hanako-san’s name three times, Hanako-san will appear. Some versions of the story say that he will appear from one of the toilets or from the toilet door. In some versions, he can appear if someone hits the closet door three times.

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When Hanako-san appears, she can do various things. Some versions of the story depict her as a scary and terrible ghost, while others depict her as a friendly girl who wants to talk to anyone who calls her.

Some versions of the story also reveal Hanako-san’s background. For example, some stories say that Hanako-san was a girl who died tragically at school, while other versions say that she was a girl who was molested by her classmates.

Influence on Popular Culture

Hanako-san’s stories have served as inspiration for numerous works of fiction, including books, films, and anime. In the modern era, the character Hanako-san often appears in various media as part of the horror and supernatural genres. Anime such as “Jibaku Shounen Hanako-kun” are examples that take inspiration from this legend.

Cultural Meanings and Moral Messages

Hanako-san’s stories reflect the fears and imaginations of children and youth. Apart from that, this story can also contain a moral message about the need to be careful and respect places that are considered sacred or historic.

The legend of Hanako-san is one example of how scary stories and urban legends can influence popular culture and live on in people’s imaginations. While this story may just be a myth, its influence on Japanese culture continues.

The story about Aka Manto’s

Another famous Japanese school ghost story is the story of Aka Manto. The story of Aka Manto is one of the most scary stories known in Japan, especially among children and teenagers. This story tells of a ghost who appears in the toilet and asks the victim terrible questions. The following is the story about Aka Manto:

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Aka Manto, which literally means “red coat,” is a ghost that is said to appear in school or public bathrooms. This ghost has a scary appearance, wearing a long red coat and sometimes wearing a mask.

The story of Aka Manto varies depending on the version told, but the general storyline is similar. When someone was using the toilet and was about to finish, suddenly Aka Manto appeared and stood in front of him. This ghost then asks the victim a terrible question:

  • “Would you like a red coat or a blue coat?”

It may seem like a simple choice, but no matter what answer the victim gives, the consequences are always disastrous.

If the victim chooses a red coat, Aka Manto will kill the victim by skinning them until they are red with blood. This refers to the color red, which represents blood.

If the victim chooses the blue coat, Aka Manto will strangle the victim to death, turning their face blue from lack of oxygen.

Several versions of the story also tell of the victim trying to trick Aka Manto by choosing a different coat color, such as white or green. However, in many versions of the story, Aka Manto will give no other choice than red and blue.

Meaning and Moral Message

The Aka Manto story, like many other scary stories, has hidden meanings and moral messages. Although the goal is to scare, this story also contains a message to be careful of situations or people that seem too good to be true. Apart from that, this story can also be considered a warning to maintain safety and caution in an environment that may be dangerous.

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The story of Aka Manto is another example of how scary stories and urban legends can become an important part of people’s culture and imagination. Even though it may only be a story, its impact on society remains strong and profound.

Tsukimono: Spirit in the Night

The last ghost story in a Japanese school is Tsukimono. Tsukimono are supernatural creatures in Japanese mythology who are considered ghost spirits that have the form and appearance of humans, especially as deceased students or teachers. The most striking element is their appearance at night, when the darkness and calm create an atmosphere suitable for scary stories.

Stories and Legends

Ghost stories about tsukimono vary from region to region in Japan. While such variations exist, some common elements include:

  1. Creepy Appearance: Tsukimono often appears with an appearance resembling that of a student or teacher, sometimes wearing a school uniform. Although it looks like an ordinary human at first glance, some of its details may be a little strange or unnatural.
  2. Appears at Night: Tsukimono generally appears at night, when the surrounding environment is quiet and dark. Appearing at this moment gave off a strong aura of mystery and added to the fear.
  3. Annoyances and Weird Occurrences: Tsukimono are said to often annoy or frighten people in the vicinity of the places where they appear. They can do things like make strange noises, approach people, or make things move for no apparent reason.

Those are ghost stories in Japanese schools, which are most popular among Japanese school students.

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