Narrative and embodiment – a scalar approach

Authors
Allan Køster
Aalborg University
Abstract
Recent work on the relation between narrative and selfhood has emphasized embodiment as an indispensable foundation for selfhood. This has occasioned an interesting debate on the relation between embodiment and narrative. In this paper, I attempt to mediate the range of conflicting intuitions within the debate by proposing a scalar approach to narrative and an accompanying concept of a split-self. Drawing on theoretical developments from contemporary narratology, I argue that we need to move away from a binary understanding of narrative as something an entity strictly is or is not; rather, we need to see narrative as an attribute admitting of degrees. I suggest that the relation between narrative and embodiment should be seen along these lines, proposing three levels of the narrativity of embodied experiencing: 1) the unnarratable, 2) the narratable and 3) the narrative. Finally, I discuss the implications this framework has for the general question of the narrative constitution of selfhood.
Keywords Narrativity  Embodied experience  Split-self  the Unnarratable  the Narratable  the Narrative
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DOI 10.1007/s11097-016-9485-8
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References found in this work BETA

How the Body Shapes the Mind.Shaun Gallagher - 2007 - Philosophy 82 (319):196-200.
Against Narrativity.Galen Strawson - 2004 - Ratio 17 (4):428-452.
Phenomenology of Perception.Aron Gurwitsch, M. Merleau-Ponty & Colin Smith - 1964 - Philosophical Review 73 (3):417.
The Narrative Self.Marya Schechtman - 2011 - In Shaun Gallagher (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of the Self. Oxford University Press.

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