October 24, 2010

VOD: An Invitation to World Literature

Just learned that the WGBH–TV/Seftel Productions series An Invitation to World Literature is now streaming for free at Annenberg Media's Learner.org website.

Of special interest to me is Episode 7, which deals with the Asian epic Journey to the West (also known as the Monkey King Epic), and which has my friend Diane Wolkstein as one of the guest experts.

Here is the episode description provided by the Annenberg people:

"The powerful and mischievous Stone Monkey King brings chaos to heaven and earth. Freed from a mountain prison in order to guard a Chinese monk on his journey to retrieve the Buddhist scriptures from India, Monkey seeks his own spiritual transformation. Modern performance, contemporary art, and Buddhist philosophers provide a rich context to the ancient tale. Featured cast members include playwright David Henry Huang, storyteller Dianne [sic] Wolkstein, and translator Professor Anthony Yu."

I wish I could embed Episode 7 directly, but Annenberg clearly doesn't "get" YouTube or Vimeo (unlike those of us who actually do, and with good reason), so you will have to:

1) go to the Annenberg site linked above,

2) scroll down the episode list until you reach Episode 7 ("Journey to the West"),

3) find the "VOD" (video on demand) icon and click on it, and

4) make sure you allow pop–up windows for the Annenberg site (Firefox may be set to block them, so you will have to un–block them and refresh the page so that the window opens and the video loads).

Look at it this way: you won't have to petition your local PBS station to air the series, let alone in prime time.

I'll say more after I've had a chance to view the episode.

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