Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives

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Patrick has helped organize countless creative interventions, including mass direct actions that shut down the Seattle WTO meeting in and protested the U. He is the author of numerous essays on social change theory and practice, including co-writing Re:Imagining Change PM Press He is the co-founder of the Center for Story-based Strategy formerly known as smartMeme , a movement support organization which harnesses the power of narrative for fundamental social change.

He lives with his family in the San Francisco Bay area.

Telling Lives: Marianne Horsdal: Books

Doyle Canning was struck by a tear gas canister in the streets of Seattle in , and has never been the same since. She is a creative strategist with a deep commitment to building broad-based movements for social justice and an ecological future. Doyle is a co-founder of the Center for Story-based Strategy formerly known as smartMeme. She delivers training, coaching, facilitation and framing to high-impact networks who are taking on greedy corporations, corrupt politicians, racist laws and polluting policies.

Robert J. Shiller, "Narrative Economics": Director's Lecture, January 26, 2017

She lives with her husband in Boston, where she enjoys practicing yoga, cooking, and making music. Hey there! Did you know that you can jump into our experimental visualization interface right from this point? Give it a try and send us your feedback! Not sure yet? Find out more about the books! Get Involved News Donate.

Narrative identity

Search for:. Both interest in and understanding of narrative analysis had developed rapidly in recent years and is now a mainstream element of research across many disciplines. In the groundbreaking Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives, the author illustrates as many facets as possible of the stories people tell about their lives. She demonstrates the interconnectedness between engagements in narrative research and shows that the theoretical understanding of the nature of narrative is bound up with the methods for biographical narrative research.

Through a combination of three independent, connected narrative dimensions, an embodied, a cognitive and a socio-cultural narrative, the author focuses on life story narratives as symbolic expressions where cultural constructions allow for interpersonal interaction. This book also outlines the influence cultural and social environments have upon our own unique narrative memories coupled with our own physical movements in space. The author concludes that the telling and exchanging of human narratives is the primary way of making sense and creating meaning of our own being.

This book brings together neuro-physiology, philosophical perspectives and research data and methodology to formulate a new understanding of narrative analysis. It will also help you to produce and analyze your own narrative interviews and perform biographical research. In such news stories, which reconstruct past news events such as a crime or disaster , frequent transitions take place to a setting — typically a press conference, interview, or court session — in which the news actors elaborate and reflect on these events.

Such settings are conceptualized as legitimizing because they serve a function of demonstrating that the journalist rightfully and truthfully reconstructs the narrative sequence of news events. Still from the Pickwick story showing Beau sitting next to her mother at a bus stop. In branding and marketing literature, such identification by consumers is defined in terms of Hero enactment. Practitioners and scholars alike consider narrative archetypes effective in establishing meaningful psychological relations between brand and consumer Herskovitz and Crystal, ; Nelson, These relations emanate through the identification of connections between the narrative of the brand and the autobiographical narrative of the consumer Ochoa and Lorimer, Narrative archetypes are instruments to disclose as well as interpret these connections via a process of identity mapping.

Archetypes communicated by a brand express its identity and resonate therefore most with individuals whose desired identity is, at least at that specific moment in their lives, composed of the same archetypes. In other words, consumers identify with brands whose identities map onto their own identities in terms of its archetypal components.

At the object-centered level, the relationship is driven by a functional need to acquire information about and benefits from the brand. At the self-centered level, the relationship between brand and consumer is characterized by its personal relevance to the consumer. While consumers can engage in relations with brands at one, two, or all three levels, the importance of the relation to the consumer increases from little meaningful at the object-centered level to intermediate meaningful at the self-centered level and, finally, to most meaningful at the social level. Brands can develop and foster these relations through advertising.

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Whereas traditional advertisements typically focus on product characteristics and service promotion, thus appealing to the object-centered level, brand stories are much more aimed at consumers and their individual and social identities, thus appealing to the self-centered and social level. The Pickwick story, for example, does not include explicit information about the tea product nor about the brand. Instead, it relates the individual experiences of a young girl in her efforts to improve the relationship with her family. The story thus communicates to consumers that the Pickwick brand enables them to be empathetic and brave individuals and, by implication, to create and maintain strong social bonds.

The concept of archetype enactment helps to understand the process via which brand stories affect the relation between consumer and brand Woodside et al. When enacting an archetype in a story, consumers adopt the role of a narrative character and vicariously experience in cognitive, emotional, moral or even embodied way, the narrated actions and events Efthimiou, ; Sanders, ; Van Krieken et al. Enacting an archetype implies that the consumer is not a passive audience member, but, via simulation, an active participant in the story cf. Mar and Oatley, ; Oatley, Because such participation is an intense form of story processing, it may result in positive outcomes for the consumer that stretch beyond the boundaries of the story into the daily life of the consumer, such as pleasure and sense making, which have been identified as the main outcomes of archetype enactment Woodside, Feelings of pleasure arise from the intense emotions experienced by the consumer and have therefore been described as cathartic in nature Woodside, ; derived from the Greek noun catharsis.

Enacting the moral judgments narrative characters make with regard to their actions and decisions and those of others may cause consumers to evaluate and sharpen their own moral views. The Pickwick story appeals to morality in two ways. Consumers enacting the Hero archetype may be prompted to reevaluate their own family relations and, when considered necessary, may find themselves empowered to take action in a prudent way, for instance by taking the time to drink tea together and bringing up what is essential.

Such an outcome is in line with the understanding that hero narratives fulfill two related functions: an epistemic function by offering scripts for prosocial action, by revealing fundamental truths about human existence and life paradoxes, and by cultivating emotional intelligence; and an energizing function by promoting moral elevation, inspiring psychological growth, and offering options and motivations to act Allison and Goethals, The Hero character traits and values in brand stories may be aligned with traits and values that have been associated with heroes and moral exemplars in the heroism literature Allison and Goethals, ; Fagin-Jones, From these traits, the Heroine character in the Pickwick narrative can be described as selfless for being brave in revealing her deepest wishes while confronting her mother and caring for being empathetic and committed to the bond between her mother and herself , but also smart for using a cleverly disguised strategy and resilient for enduring the previous period of detachment and staying committed.

Understanding the relative importance of the various stages helps to understand the nature of archetype enactment pursued by brand stories. For example, a given brand story may invite consumers to enact the Hero while the brand is framed as the Helper supplying a Supernatural Aid, which is the case in the Pickwick story.

Another brand story may invite consumers to enact the Helper archetype that helps the brand, represented as the Hero, to fulfill its journey. The brand as Supernatural Aid could be introduced during the resolution, supportive to the Hero in celebrating the completion of the quest, inviting the consumer to enact the reward of cathartic feelings such as decreased vulnerability and satisfaction.

Alternatively, or complementary, the Brand as Supernatural Aid can be introduced or foregrounded during the critical event, when it is supportive to the Hero in dealing with obstacles, inviting the consumer to enact phronetic experiences in which wisdom and guidance are central. Summarizing the previous, consumer enactment of brand story Heroes is likely to vary because of specific archetypal structures in the narrative plot and may be enforced by the narrative plot showing the story, as well as by the embedding of interactive voices telling the story.

Depending on the interplay between showing the narrative plot and telling by narrative voices, enactment can invite consumers to develop feelings toward the brand that represent catharsis or phronesis, as well as moral values that align with heroic character traits that are reflected in the story plot. Following up on previous research entailing case studies Papadatos, ; Ochoa and Lorimer, ; Laub et al.

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In this approach, the psychological models on archetypes and their representation are combined with psychological insights on heroic values and with narratological insights on perspective-taking and story structure. The resulting framework is applied in an initial analysis of 20 brand videos, aiming to assess its viability and to formulate expectations on possible consumer effects. In order to gain more insight into the relation between brand stories and the nature and outcomes of archetype enactment, we conducted an analysis of a variety of brand stories. We explained why these advertisements can be considered to be stories rather than traditional non-narrative advertisements and subsequently asked the students to select brand videos that they considered narrative and found to be attractive.

This procedure allowed us to explore the extent to which brand stories that are actually found to be attractive by consumers display the archetypal structures that are generally thought of as being attractive. This aim was informed by the widespread but yet to be tested contention that consumers, as well as audience members in general, are attracted to stories more than to other communication formats because stories are structured around archetypes that people can and want to relate to e. A set of brand stories was collected by a group of 27 master students who were blind to the objectives of the study.

Our aim was to assemble a representative set of at least 20 stories covering a reasonably broad range of brands. The students were instructed to select brand videos that met two criteria. Second, the brand videos had to be appealing to the students.

First, the collected brand stories were categorized as either 1 singular plot stories or 2 embedded plot stories. A story was classified as a singular plot story if all story events took place on a single time line separate from the here and now. A story was classified as embedded plot story if it included interactive events taking place on multiple time lines that may, but do not necessarily have to be, connected to the here and now.

Next, the brand stories were analyzed on narrative structure Labov and Waletzky, ; Labov, and archetypes Campbell, To this end, the videos were first divided into fragments. The demarcation of fragments was primarily based on episode transitions, i. Subsequently, each fragment was analyzed on a number of variables. A single fragment could be coded as depicting multiple elements.

Finally, if a fragment did not fit in either of these categories, it was coded as 7 none.

Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives
Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives
Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives
Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives
Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives
Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives
Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives Telling Lives: Exploring dimensions of narratives

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