Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Narrative Research

The narrative of a film is generalised these days by simply saying it has a begining, a middle and an end. Howver, there are more stages of films have been stated in more detail. The basis stages are:

  • Exposition - This gives us the simple introduction to the story 
  • Disruption - Here there is an obstacle, in the story
  • Climax - At this point there is a turning point
  • Resolution - Everything is restord and there is balance once again.

 Todorov's theory of narrative is made up of five stages, this conists of the following:

  • The equilibrium is the point where characters are introduced (major and minor) and the story commences.
  • Disruption- The antagonist(s) would be introducedand the story starts to divert slightly.
  • Recognition- The disruption has been recognised. The effects of the disruption start to take place mainly on characters.
  • Attempt to repair- At this stage, the disruption is repaired and resolved.This i would say is the peak of the film.
  • New equilibrium- Here, the diruption is gone and effects of it have eased away. There story usually ends on a high note. 

Roland Barth sayd that all narratives share structural features that are brought together in different ways. Even though there are differenenes between individual narratives, they all have a limited number of organisational structures that affect our reading of the text. These are called narrative codes.
  • Enigma Code - A narrative device that teases the audience with a puzzle or riddel
  • Action Code - Events we know that will be significant in the development of the narrative.   

On the other hand, Vladimir Propp also concluded that all the characters could be resolved into 8 character types:
  1. The villain  - Who struggles against the hero.
  2. The dispatcher  - The character who makes the weakness known and sends the hero off.
  3. The (magical) helper  -  helps the hero in the quest.
  4. The princess or prize  - the hero deserves her throughout the story but cant to marry her because of an unfair evil, usually because of the villain. The hero's journey is mostly ended when he marries the princess,also beating the villain.
  5. Her father  -  gives the task to the hero, shows the false hero, marries the hero.
  6. The donor  - prepares the hero or gives the hero some magical object to help him.
  7. The hero or victim/seeker hero  -  reacts to the donor, weds the princess.
  8. False hero — takes credit for the hero’s actions or tries to marry the princess.
Lastly, when looking at Claude Levi Strauss, he studied hundreds of myths and legends from around the world. He stated that we make sense of the world, people and events by seeing and using binary opposites. He observed that all narratives are organised around the conflict between binary opposites such as:
  • Good vs Evil
  • Boy vs Girl
  • Humanity vs Technology

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