You might have heard the 1,000-year-old story of two blind men wanting to know what an elephant looks like: The one who touches the trunk imagines and describes a very different animal than the one who leans on the stomach, pets the ear, hugs a leg. They argue over who is right, though we know they are both simultaneously right and wrong. The Rashomon effect—the phenomenon of recounting the same event differently—comes from the title of the 1950 Japanese film by Akira Kurosawa, in which four witnesses remember the circumstances around the death of a samurai in four different ways. The samurai’s wife claimed she was sexually assaulted by a bandit, passed out and then awoke to find her husband dead. The bandit claimed he seduced the wife and then killed the samurai in a duel—and so on. The dramatic tension This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty-Three Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 19 Going Incognito We all secretly wonder what mischief we’d make if invisible: When our identity is hidden, everything seems possible. Arts & Culture Issue 19 The Best Policy Sometimes we talk to each other without feeling heard. Honesty—a most intimate interaction—can be just as thrilling as its more devious inverse. Arts & Culture Issue 19 A Sense of Suspense With unhinged imaginations and mountains of cliff-hangers, the filmmakers behind the sci-fi podcast Limetown have all the makings of a scary story. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Like Clockwork In this new column about time, we learn how slipping off our watches makes us feel like deadline-damning renegades. Arts & Culture Music Issue 19 On a Grander Scale Malaysian singer-songwriter Yuna now may live on the opposite side of the globe, but she’s determined to evolve while staying true to her roots. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Neighborhood: Fire Stations The firefighting profession has evolved over time from Ancient Rome’s rudimentary bucket brigades to today’s sleek life-saving departments.