Read e-book online A Theory of Narrative PDF

By Rick Altman

ISBN-10: 0231144288

ISBN-13: 9780231144285

Narrative is a strong component to human tradition, storing and sharing the loved elements of our own stories and giving constitution to our legislation, leisure, and heritage. We adventure narrative in phrases, images, and picture, but despite how the story is instructed, tale continues to be self reliant from the media that makes it concrete. Narrative follows people at any place they go back and forth and adapts without problems to new varieties of verbal exchange. continually evolving and regularly updated, narrative is an important technique of human expression and a primary part of human identity.

In order to appreciate human interplay, award-winning pupil Rick Altman launches an in depth research of narrative's nature, its edition in numerous contexts, and the strategy in which it makes that means. Altman's procedure breaks clear of conventional different types of research, making a choice on 3 uncomplicated techniques: single-focus, dual-focus, and multiple-focus. Unpacking an deliberately diversified collection of texts, Altman demonstrates how those suggestions functionality in context and illustrates their theoretical and useful functions by way of textual research, literary and movie historical past, social association, faith, and politics. He employs artistic terminology and designated analytical equipment all through his groundbreaking paintings, making this quantity perfect for educating literary and picture concept and for exploring the anatomy of narrative on a extra basic level.

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Example text

By itself, daily life cannot be said to constitute narratives, however much narrative material it may provide. But when a naturalist novelist cuts daily life into slices, thus delimiting and framing it, the narratives implicit in daily life may be revealed. To recognize “some” narrative, all we need are narrative material and following, but “a” narrative is recognizable only when it has been fully framed. In one sense, then, it is the very process of framing that gives a text its beginning and end.

We were led to juxtapose these two passages because of their formal and verbal similarities; now we must inquire as to the differences exposed by those similarities. Charlemagne’s sword is named “Joyous,” for the relics it contains, whereas Baligant’s sword is dubbed “Precious,” because it is encrusted with valuable jewels (228). Where the French emperor has the Christian virtue of joy and relics of the saints, the pagan emir has naught but pride and earthly goods. Baligant thus insists that the French king surrender to him and become his vassal.

Witness the example of Saragossa, where the first Saracen council takes place, and the makeshift camp where the French are installed at the beginning of the action. Now Saragossa is a city, not a country town; even the poet must have known that, because he considered Saragossa important enough for Charlemagne to bother to capture it. Another age—or another type of text—would have shown us the narrow streets and spacious courtyards, the moats and drawbridges, the merchants with their strange wares, the ladies with their bizarre costumes.

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A Theory of Narrative by Rick Altman


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