Intro to Narrative, Ch 1,2 and Lecture 1 Notes.odt

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Chester Scoville

The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative – Chapter 1 & 2 Reading Key Points Chapter 1: Narrative and Life -The gift of narrative is so pervasive and universal that there are those who strongly suggest that narrative is a “deep structure,” a human capacity genetically hard-wired into our minds in the same way as our capacity for grammar (according to some linguists) is something we are born with -Achild's need for stories is as fundamental as his need for food Narrative and Time -We can create time through narrative – stories, etc. Narrative Perception -when we look at something static (picture), narrative consciousness comes into play -even when we don't know the specific story depicted in a painting, we can still be tempted to look for a story -Narrative can be an instrument that provokes active thinking and helps us work through problems, or it can be used to keep us in darkness and even encourage us to do things we should not do Chapter 2: The Bare Minimum Narrative is the representation of an event or a series of events “My dog has fleas” - description “My dog was bitten by a flea” - narrative (something happened – an event) 2 major uses of the term narrative: 1)Compact and definable -building block for longer narrative structures 2)Loose and generally recognizable -longer structures that we call narratives even though they may contain much non-narrative material -in recognizable genres: - tragedy, comedy, epic, short story – film, drama, poetry, and prose (fiction/non-fiction) The difference between events and their representation is the difference between story (the event or sequence of events) and narrative discourse (how the story is conveyed). Story and Narrative Discourse -difference between story and narrative discourse is – a difference between two kinds of time and two kinds of order -non-narrative text-types – only time involved is the time it takes to read, and the only order is that of the structure of the essay -narrative = we are aware of the time of reading and the order in which things are read, and the time the story events are supposed to take and order in which they are supposed to occur Narrative discourse can go in any temporal direction its creator chooses –All stories go in one direction only – forward in time The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative – Chapter 1 & 2 Reading Key Points Narrative is the repetition of events, consisting of story and narrative discourse – sequence of events (real or fictional) Story is an event or sequence of events (the action) Narrative Discourse is tho
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