Date of Award
Dr. Sharon Chan
In the midst of rapid social changes and modernization, urban legends survive as a stable but evolving structure which exist in many distinct and universal societies. To satisfy one’s psychological and social urges, people could actively engage in and swap between the roles of creators, co-creators and listeners of urban legends. Undeniably, the existence of urban legends have been taken for granted, as manifested by their recurring appearances in social interactions with social members like family members and acquaintances. Unlike fairy tales or historical stories, urban legends do trigger larger public attention and intrigue, even if the narrative elements of a typical urban legend are ambiguous and difficult to validate. Despite Weber’s (1958) articulation of the rationalized modern society, the mania for urban legends may follow a contradiction with evidence-based modern science. While these urban stories successfully acquire mass public attention for pure entertainment, little do we know why these stories are being told. Despite being taken for granted, it is of interest to unveil the facade of urban legends and understand why they are created and how they are sustained, as well as the implicit meanings conveyed.
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Lee, L. S. S. (2019). The promulgation of urban legends in Hong Kong: Li's field as a case study (UG dissertation, Lingnan University, Hong Kong). Retrieved from http://commons.ln.edu.hk/socsci_fyp/17