As you can imagine, the transmedial storytelling around Wiedźmin [The Witcher] combines many of my interests. Therefore, I wish to contribute to this phenomenon by means of a new translation (from Polish to English) of the short stories from the collection Ostatnie życzenie (The Last Wish) by Andrzej Sapkowski. Because of Covid, I could not meet my teacher Sławomir, but last week, he double checked this fourth story for me. ^_^ Please let me know if you have any comments or suggestions.

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As a scholar and a musician, I can carry on with my work. Of course, things have changed – conferences became Zoom calls and concerts got replaced by recordings, for example. Still, I feel that I continue to grow in both areas from the safe place of my home. But how does this work for a martial artist? In this writing, I would like to share the various ways in which I currently work on my martial arts journey, and show you one of my “kata study drawings” as an example. It is my hope that by sharing our ideas, we can support and inspire each other to stay happy & healthy in these times of Corona.

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an image of King Alfred from The Last Kingdom

Surakian wrote this untitled fanfiction for The Last Kingdom, in which King Alfred gets very sick (when hiding in the Athelney marshes) and Modwenna cures him. She finds out that he has a wyrm in his spinal cord, and her herbal medicine does not seem to work, but when he is as good as dead, she summons the wyrm (that is called Gifer) to go away. Republished with permission of the author.

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When the Disney studios announced that they had cast Halle Bailey in the role of Ariel, aka The Little Mermaid, for their latest live-action remake, there was a wave of reactions and most of all: criticism. Twitter hashtags #NotMyMermaid and #NotMyAriel became trending topics and Halle was ridiculed in words as well as in ‘anti-fan art’. And why? Not because anyone doubted the acting and singing talent of the 19-year-old R&B star. Nobody questioned the judgment of director Rob Marshall who praises Halle’s ”rare combination of spirit, heart, youth, innocence, and substance, plus a glorious singing voice”. No, the hatred is based solely on Halle’s skin colour supposedly not matching the role. In my opinion, this online hatred of the new mermaid isn’t just racism based on white privilege, it’s rooted in whitewashing.

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Special interests are one of the most common characteristics of people with autism*, and in my experience, they often come as a surprise. While watching Netflix’ series Vikings to examine the portrayal of King Alfred, a new “fixation” stroke me like lightning. Since her first appearance in Vikings, I became utterly obsessed with fascinated by princess Gisla. So, I did as I always do – googling & reading – and below are the results. An abridged version of this post is also published in the Ancient History Encyclopedia.

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I had to brush off my Spanish, but with a little help from my friends, I managed to understand this fanfiction about El rey Alfred by Venezuelan Tumblr user marithesoprano. With her permission, here I post her original with an English translation (as literal as possible). Many thanks to Inti & Rosasharn. 🙂

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