In Haruki Murakami's novel 1Q84, there is a novella, Air Chrysalis, that plays an important role. It describes some apparently supernatural beings called "the Little People". When the "Little People" first appear in the novella, there are six of them. However, the heroine of the novella thinks that there should be seven of them, like in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and then there are seven.

The Little People are described as being identical except for their voices. When you try to count how many voices they have, it seems like there are eight. There are

  1. a bass,
  2. a baritone,
  3. a tenor,
  4. one with a small voice,
  5. one with a soft voice,
  6. one with a screechy voice,
  7. one with a hoarse voice,
  8. the keeper of the beat.

Has anybody come up with an explanation for this discrepancy?

  • 1
    After I've been screeching, I get hoarse.
    – Valorum
    Commented Apr 25, 2020 at 12:16


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