Tracking ‘Strange Beasts of China’ With Booze, Smokes and Sleuthing

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By Stephen Kearse

By Yan Ge
Translated by Jeremy Tiang

The word “cryptozoology” has an aura of scientific rigor, evoking decoded gene sequences and immaculately preserved fossils. In practice, though, it’s a pseudoscience focused on human myths. To reach the Minotaur — be it Bigfoot or the Loch Ness monster — the cryptozoologist navigates a labyrinth of hearsay, conjecture and hallucination. The journey is inevitably inward; the Minotaur is always us.

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