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It’s Open to Interpretation: Telling Porkies - Narrating and Rewriting Life History and the Use of Dramatic License

Lyon, Steve and Thurgood, Graham (2007) It’s Open to Interpretation: Telling Porkies - Narrating and Rewriting Life History and the Use of Dramatic License. In: Narrative and Memory. University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, pp. 43-52.

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Abstract

This paper provides some personal reflections on issues relating to how people
tell their life stories and interpret their past experiences, and how nurse
teachers and researchers may interpret and use these narratives.
This is a discussion of whether tales appearing on paper and told in the
classroom are ever truthful accounts and the extent to which they may be
manipulated for maximum effect considered. In a world fed on super graphics
and sound bites; what hope the subtle story teller. When ‘King Kong’ is
preferred over “Brokeback Mountain” the temptation to dramatise looms large.
Examples of the use of dramatic license from both the narrators and researchers
view point are provided. An exploration of why stories may be dramatised, and
some of the legal and ethical dilemmas that surface for anyone who is
representing the life stories of others either on paper or in the classroom are
discussed.
There is discussion of whether it is ever justified to fabricate life stories in
order to best secure the ear of an audience and particularly in relation to when
the life story is not ones own, but belongs to another. The purpose of
‘stretching the truth’ is explored and its methodological implications for the
researcher considered.

Item Type: Book Chapter
Additional Information: Steve Lyon has held a number of posts in both education and clinical practice. He has a particular interest in the use of life story and its use in engaging with people using mental health services, provision of person centred care, and relapse prevention. Steve has helped introduce clinical supervision into two large mental health trusts, and reflects his interest in the use of narrative, reflective practice, and clinical supervision. Graham worked in clinical nursing practice before moving to nurse education. He teaches on pre-registration undergraduate nursing courses and post-graduate management courses. He has conducted oral history interviews with retired nurses using a life story approach as part of an ongoing PhD study into the history of nursing in Halifax and Huddersfield .
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences
School of Human and Health Sciences > Narrative and Memory Research Group > Narrative and Memory Research Group Annual Conference
School of Human and Health Sciences > Narrative and Memory Research Group
School of Human and Health Sciences > Centre for Health and Social Care Research
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Graham Stone
Date Deposited: 29 May 2009 14:00
Last Modified: 22 Aug 2015 09:17
URI: http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/4566

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