Lesson aims

:
To understand the term narrative. To understand the different types of narrative structure. To identify different types of narrative structure used in a media texts.

Narrative
³ Stories are the events in the order of their occurrence, where as plot is the order in which they are told to the audience. Narratives are about the structure of the text´

Narrative
³ Stories are the events in the order of their occurrence, where as plot is the order in which they are told to the audience. What is told Narratives are about the structure of the text´ How it is told

What does narrative mean?
‡ ³NARRATIVE REFERS TO STORYMAKING AND STORY STRUCTURE. THE NARRATIVE OF A PROGRAMME OR AN ARTICLE IS NOTJUST ITS STORYLINE. IT IS ALSO HOW THE STORY IS ORGANISED AND ABOUT HOW THE UNDERSTANDING OF THE READER IS ORGANISED BY THE WAYS IN WHICH THE STORY IS TOLD´ ‡ (BURTON, 1990)

Types of narrative
‡ Linear narrative ± Where the story has a start,
middle and, end in that order.

‡ Non-linear narrative ± This is where the narrative is
not in chronological order. Eg flashbacks
Can you identify what type of narrative is being used in this clip

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Open / closed narrative
‡ Open narrative ± This is when there is no resolution at the end and events are left open for the plot to continue. ‡ Closed narrative ± At the end of the narrative events have been explained and resolution has been achieved.
Eg. The killer has been caught, the case has been solved.
.

Watch the following clip from the end of ³I Know What You Did Last Summer, does it have an open or closed narrative?

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How narrative information is conveyed to the audience: ‡ Restricted narrative: narrative from only one character in the story, audience has limited access to narrative events as see only events as this character does. ‡ Omniscient narrative: narrative from more than one character, so audience has access to more narrative events (sometimes knowing more than the characters) Can you think of any example of how both of these techniques can be used to create suspense.

Memento

Clover field
‡ Describe the narrative structure/techniques used in this sequence?

Psycho ± Alfred Hitchcock
‡ Describe the narrative structure/techniques used in this sequence?

28 Days Later
‡ Describe the narrative structure/techniques used in this sequence?

Narrative Theory
‡ Russian theorist, Tzvetan Todorov, suggests that all narratives follow a four part structure. They begin with equilibrium, where everything is balanced, progress as something comes along, an agent of change, to disrupt that equilibrium, and finally reach a resolution, when equilibrium is restored.

Todorov
Equilibrium

New equilibrium Disruption (Disequilibrium)

Narrative Theory ± A more developed version of Todorovs Theory ± This is McKee¶s µclassic Narrative Structure¶

Character Roles in Narrative
‡ Todorov came up with his theories after making a study of Russian folk tales. So too did Vladimir Propp, who came up with the theory that there are only a certain number of characters, who crop up in most narratives. It is easy to spot the hero and villain in most cases, but here are some others: ‡ We expect them to be there, and to behave in a certain way. Try identifying them in the following fairy story and then think how they are used in your comic story.

Character Type Hero ( protagonist) Villain ( antagonist) Heroine Father Helper Donor Mentor Blocker

Role Within Narrative
Leads the narrative, is usually looking for something (a quest) or trying to solve something (a mystery). Does not have to be male :) Conflicts with the hero Is usually some sort of prize or reward for the hero. NB if your hero is female, your heroine can be male :) An authority figure who offers a reward to the hero for completing their quest. That reward might be a prince or a princess or a cool new job Helps the hero - often acts as a sidekick Gives the hero something - a clue, a talisman, a special power - which helps them complete their quest Teaches and guides the hero Attempts to stop the hero achieving his task

Different character types (Propp)
‡ How many of these character types can you identify in the Scream trailer ‡ Trailers for Scream (1996/I)

Narrative devices: Key terms
OMNISCIENT RESTRICTED NARRATOR ENIGMA CODE ACTION CODE PROTAGONIST ANTAGONIST VERISIMILITUDE LINEAR SIMULTANEUOS ACTION

Narrative devices: Key terms
OMNISCIENT

RESTRICTED

NARRATOR

ENIGMA CODE

ACTION CODE

PROTAGONIST

ANTAGONIST

VERISIMILITUDE

LINEAR

NON LINEAR

SIMULTANEUOS ACTION