Puppets can be creepy, but they can also be beautifully expressive. Learn more about the Japanese art of Bunraku, one of the world’s most highly developed forms of puppet theater, with the Columbia e-resource: The Barbara Curtis Adachi Bunraku Collection! With over 12,500 digitized slides and 7,000 photographs, this collection is a deep dive into an unusually complex dramatic form, which is a collaborative effort between puppeteers, narrators, and musicians. First developed in the seventeenth century, Bunraku was officially recognized as a “masterpiece of the oral and intangible heritage of humanity” by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in November 2003.


An especially amazing feature of this collection is the Force Graph of Connected Characters,  which shows instances of characters that appear in more than one play, and allows you to navigate to learn about different plays and characters.