What is narrative? Does narrative have a structure?
See key ideas about narrative on the calendar page. Think about:
- archetypes of hero
- the moment of literacy, the divide of the role (and form) of knowledge, story (oral tradition) vs. thought (separate from experience)
What our group (Marieke, Katia, me) did: a translation of The Giving Tree with Steve's suggested map-and-abstract methods, with added questions about stakes, obstacles and resolution.
Excerpt from the pad
Orestis is wounded by a pack of wolves. He stumbles upon a lake.
"You are hurt," the lake says, "use my water to wash your wound." Orestis does.
"Use the plants from the water — they help you heal." Orestis does, and soon, he heals.
Orestis swims in the lake, enjoying the sun and the life in nature.
He falls asleep in the sun and is badly burned.
"Use my water," the lake says. Orestis does, and soon, he heals.
Everyday when Orestis gets hungry, the lake says, "Come! Fish!" Orestis catches the fish. The lake feeds him.
One day the lake asks Orestis, "Can you go to the other side of the mountain and get me the purple and white flowers. I need them for my water. Otherwise I cannot feed the fish."
"The mountain is too far and dangerous," Orestis refuses, "I don't want to risk being attacked by the wolves. Don't you rememeber how hurt I was? Have you forgotten?"
"How can I forget," the lake says, "but if you don't get the flowers for me I will be depleted of fish and you will have no food."
"FINE!" Orestis turns his back on the lake and leaves. He moves to the city and discovers fish sticks. They are much easier to get and cook straight from the freezer.
Fast food is great, Orestis finds his new love.
He becomes obese. His stomach, inflamed.
He tries all the medicines available in the city but nothing works. He remembers how he used to heal with the water from the lake.
He goes back to the lake in search for a remedy. "I need your water," says Osteris.
"Drink my water," says the lake, forgetting that he has left, "rest on my shore."
Orestis drinks. Now He feels better.
He drinks more. Now He feels stronger.
He drinks more. Now he feels invincible.
So he drinks all the water and eats the fish as he finds them.
"There is nothing left of me," the lake says.
"I am going back," says Orestis, "I do not need you anymore. I can go back to the city now."
After his return, Orestis goes from one all-you-can-eat buffet to the next. He can't get enough fish sticks.
He becomes a giant. People avoid him because he takes up all their space, then they start to loathe him.
The city can no longer contain him. His flesh spills over the sidewalk. His weight crushes the buildings and trees.
With nowhere to go, Orestis returns to the lake. He sees the emptiness of the lake. All he wants is to rest.
The lake says, "if you can't find space, here is your space."
Orestis carries his heaviness towards the hole and fills the lake with his body.
[Steve suggests: What is the situation? We open with an injured hunter What is at stake? A human in harmony with nature What interrupts the stake? Greed transforms the protagonist's relationship with nature How is the stake resolved? How will the protagonist get back what he/she has lost and reestablish his relationship with nature?]