Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Greater Narrative

When I was working on my funeral project a couple of weeks ago, I made repeated reference to a greater narrative, in which the narrative of my life was a small part. I think there is a lot of depth to the idea of viewing life as a narrative instead of a series of related or interlocking experiences. Series of experiences gives such a linear view of life, whereas narratives often have themes and experiences that are revisited and reflected upon. It's the acts of revisiting and reflecting that give significance to our experiences, and in some sense complete them. So perhaps life is a spiral moving up and down. It's cyclical through revisiting and reflecting, and linear in both directions: upwards as our stories develop, and downward as we find greater depth and meaning in our own stories. I think the implications of this view of life are enormous, especially in our VERY linear-thinking culture.

Starting tomorrow I'm doing a week long study of origin of the greater narrative(s) in Toronto. I'm interested to see how this study influences the way I view my narrative.

In a just over a week I'll hopefully start working on some narratives that have been kicking around in my head for the past 5 years. School is just about done, so the time to write is now.

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