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The Narrated Life Story: On the Interrelation Between Experience, Memory and Narration

Rosenthal, Gabriele (2006) The Narrated Life Story: On the Interrelation Between Experience, Memory and Narration. In: Narrative, Memory & Knowledge: Representations, Aesthetics, Contexts. University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, pp. 1-16.

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      Interested in the experience of people as well as in their present reconstructions
      of their experiences in the past, we as biographical researchers have to deal
      with the distinction between the narrated personal life as related in
      conversation or written in the present time and the lived-through life. When
      reconstructing a past (the life history) presented in the present of a life
      narrative (the life story) it must be considered that the presentation of past
      events is constituted by the present of narrating. The present of the biographer
      determines his or her perspective on the past and produces a specific past at
      times. In the course of a life with its biographical turning points new
      remembered pasts arise at each point. This construction of the past out of the
      present is not, however, to be understood as a construction independent from
      the respective experienced past. Instead, memory-based narratives of
      experienced events are also constituted through experiences in the past. So
      narratives of experienced events refer both to the current life and to the past
      experience. In my paper I will present a gestalt-theoretical phenomenological
      concept of the dialectical interrelation between experience, memory and
      narration. Using an empirical example, namely the biography of an ethnic
      German from the former Soviet Union, I will discuss this distinction between
      the life history and the life story as one that must be taken into account in all
      narrated and written biographies.

      Item Type: Book Chapter
      Additional Information: Copyright for chapters remain with individual authors at all times and permission should be sought from the author for any reproduction other than for personal use.
      Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
      Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences > Narrative and Memory Research Group > Narrative and Memory Research Group Annual Conference
      School of Human and Health Sciences
      Related URLs:
      Depositing User: Cherry Edmunds
      Date Deposited: 01 Jul 2009 15:32
      Last Modified: 30 Jul 2010 14:10


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