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Four Critical Perspectives on Narratology
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1267-0031
2016 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In this talk, I compare four variants of a critique against narratology. They hold that narratology uses natural narrative as a model for understanding fiction, and that narratologists hereby risk making a "reductionist fallacy". This mistake will, at least in theory, lead to deviant readings of literary texts. Besides inquiring into the commonalities and differences of the critical approaches, I ask what kind of future research the critique suggests for the topic of narrative fiction. So as to pinpoint the object of the critique, the first concern of my presentation is the different understandings of the term "narratology". Then I take up unnatural narratology as the first adversary. I argue that this approach is postclassical and less radical than the other three because it normally finds ‘unnatural’ features only in what is regarded as otherwise natural narratives of fiction. The second approach I call linguistic, represented by critics such as Käte Hamburger, S.-Y. Kuroda, Ann Banfield, and Sylvie Patron; here, fictional language is "objective" and doesn’t refer to a real or fictional world. The alternative theory of fiction by Richard Walsh is presented third. It focuses on the meaning-making capabilities of fictionality as a rhetorical means of communication. Finally, I turn to Lars-Åke Skalin’s aesthetic theoretical approach, which is based on a distinction between narrative fiction as an act of poetic performance and natural narratives as informational acts of communication. As a consequence of this distinction, novels and short stories are to be analyzed in terms of forms and effects. My overarching argument is that the critique under discussion here generates new questions concerning narrative fiction and its unique connection to our real world. Assumably, narrative theory has something to gain by approaching such texts as having a particular type of functionality.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016.
Keywords [en]
critique of narratology, narrative fiction, new approaches
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
Literature
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-65796OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-65796DiVA, id: diva2:1190541
Conference
International Conference on Narrative, ISSN Conference, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, June 16-18, 2016
Available from: 2018-03-14 Created: 2018-03-14 Last updated: 2018-03-19Bibliographically approved

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Sandberg, Tommy

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf