Haibane Renmei: Reading Murakami in Old Home

Tagged under Haibane Renmei

Which of the following describes you best?

I've watched some or all of Haibane Renmei
5 votes
I've watched some or all of HR and have read some Murakami.
6 votes
I've read some Murakami but have not watched Haibane Renmei.
0 votes
I have neither watched Haibane Renmei nor read Murakami.
3 votes

Only members can vote.

page 1 of 1 4 total items

shinsengumi

Retired Moderator

shinsengumi

. . . remember me?

Cancel

Many consider Haibane Renmei, by Yoshitoshi ABe, to be one of the most beautiful and thought-provoking anime series of recent memory. It is the tale of a mysterious town surrounded by high walls whose residents are forbidden to leave. Amongst the townspeople of this city are a small community of Haibane, people with wings and halos who have no recollection of life before their arrival in the town in cocoons. The names that they are given are based upon the dreams they had within their cocoons; for example the protagonist, Rakka ("falling"), is so named because her dream was of falling from the sky. After dwelling and working in the town for a number of years, Haibane depart from their existence in the town during their "day of flight."

Many questions are left unexplained in the anime that bear some discussion amongst those who have seen the anime, including

1. What are the Haibane?

2. What do their cocoon dreams symbolize?

3. What is the position of the Haibane in the village? Are they really being protected by the village?

4. What is the day of flight?

Of course, you should not feel constrained by these questions; please feel free to bring up any aspect of the series you would like to discuss.


There is more to the philosophical background to this already deep and layered anime, however. ABe noted once that he drew much of his inspiration for Haibane Renmei from the writings of famed Japanese author Haruki Murakami. In particular, the immediate inspiration for the walled town seems to be the walled city from the even-numbered chapters from Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World.

For those who have read works by Murakami such as Hard-Boiled Wonderland:

5. Does Murakami shed light on the deeper meaning behind events in Haibane Renmei in any of his works?

6. How far should one go in using Murakami as a resource for understanding Haibane Renmei?


I'm not sure how well this discussion will go, as Haibane Renmei is not exactly quite as popular as series such as Inuyasha or Naruto. Also, while Murakami is considered one of the most popular writers of contemporary fiction, it is quite likely that many members of Minitokyo have not read his works (or may not have ever heard of him either). As such, amongst forum regulars, there may be little or no overlap between those who have seen Haibane Renmei or have read Murakami. If this is the case, I highly recommend that you watch Haibane Renmei if you have not yet done so and if possible pick up a Murakami book, such as Hard-Boiled Wonderland or my personal favorite, the Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.

s h i n s e n g u m i
Minitokyo Policy, Forum, Review, and Category Maintenance Moderator Emeritus

Do not expect to be applauded when you do the right thing, and do not expect to be forgiven when you err, but even your enemies will respect commitment, and a conscience at peace is worth a thousand tainted victories.

shoujoboy

shoujoboy

Launching shoujoboy 2.0

Cancel

I saw Haibane Renmei a while back so I remember very little about it. I do certainly remember it was an enjoyable experience and one of the best told stories out there, but I guess I either never took the time to delve further into it or just never noticed the subtle nuances of the show. If you wind up with very little help a good place to go is animenation.com and use the "Ask John" column. I've asked quite a few questions and have seen many more answered that were pretty difficult so chances are you could get an idea from there.

Under construction. Who doesn't like plain text anyway?

  • Jan 31, 2006
Cancel

I've watched Haibane Renmei to the finish and found it beautifully executed. I'd be interested to read some more on the creator's works. Are these books in english? Are there any other anime work by him?

  • Jan 31, 2006

shinsengumi

Retired Moderator

shinsengumi

. . . remember me?

Cancel

Quote by shoujoboyI saw Haibane Renmei a while back so I remember very little about it. I do certainly remember it was an enjoyable experience and one of the best told stories out there, but I guess I either never took the time to delve further into it or just never noticed the subtle nuances of the show. If you wind up with very little help a good place to go is animenation.com and use the "Ask John" column. I've asked quite a few questions and have seen many more answered that were pretty difficult so chances are you could get an idea from there.

That may serve as a good resource, but whatever may be written there will only give one perspective on this very deep and multi-faceted anime. Yoshitoshi ABe, the creative mind behind the series, has stated that while he may have his own opinions on interpreting Haibane Renmei, he urges fans to make their own interpretations and form their own opinions on the symbolism and philosophy of the series, which is part of the reason why I decided to create this thread.

s h i n s e n g u m i
Minitokyo Policy, Forum, Review, and Category Maintenance Moderator Emeritus

Do not expect to be applauded when you do the right thing, and do not expect to be forgiven when you err, but even your enemies will respect commitment, and a conscience at peace is worth a thousand tainted victories.

page 1 of 1 4 total items

Back to In-depth Discussions | Active Threads | Forum Index

Only members can post replies, please register.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Read more.