Why "Iron Jean-Paul"?

Iron Jean is play on both my real name and an allusion to an influential story. My given name is the French variation of John, and is therefore pronounced, and spelled phonetically,[zhahn] rather than [jeen].

The addition of the honorific "Iron" is an allusion to the Grimm Brothers fairy tale "Iron Hans" or "Der Eisenhans", but also known throughout Europe as "The Hairy Man." The Hairy Man tale was most recently popularized in the 1990s bestseller Iron John: A Book About Men written by Robert Bly. Robert Bly is a poet who is among my favorites.

One translation of the fairy tale "Iron Hans" is available for reading here.

"Iron John" by Pierre Droal.


From Iron Hans (2013) by Xun Wang.

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