narrative theme

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What is organizing itself in the ongoing gesture-response of complex responsive processes is the patterning of communicative interaction between people as narrative and propositional themes, in which variations arise when those interacting are diverse. See variation and organization.

Narrative themes -- the narrative-like themes form, and are formed by, the process of communicative interaction at the same time. Communicative interaction patterns itself in a self-organizing way in which patterns emerge from patterns, constituting the history of interaction.

Narrative in the making vs. narrative told --
The experience of the living present, and the past, are structured in narrative-like ways. Narrative is a story or account of events, experiences, or the like, whether true or fictitious, with a beginning, an end, a plot that moves the reader/listener from beginning to end in a more or less linearly sequence.

  • narrative in the making
    • Narrative-in-the-making emerges in the living present
    • Intrinsically non-linear
    • Narrative like themes that normally have no single narrator's perspectives
    • Beginnings and endings are rather arbitrary
    • Many plots emerge simultaneously
  • narrative told
    • is retrospective
    • linear

The result of this narrative formation is experience patterned in a linear way. Personal identity, self, is then an autobiographical narrative that is continually retold, with variations. Identity is then simultaneously stable with the potential for transformation.

Nature of narrative --
The interactive communication between people forms narrative-like sequences. It is not just that people tell each other stories but that their very experience together is organized in story-like patterns that emerge in their turn-taking going on together --

  • the sequential order of narrative provides structure, or plot, that gives the narrative its meaning
  • in order to make sense of the constituent parts of he narrative, one must grasp the overall plot
  • narratives display sensitivity to what is ordinary and what is exceptional in human interaction
  • narrative mediates between the norms of culture and unique individual beliefs, desires, and hopes
  • it renders the exceptional comprehensible
  • it provides a means of constructing a world and identifying it flow as well as regulating the affects of people