Thursday, September 01, 2016

A Guide to Understanding Complex Narratives: Daniele Chatelain "Perceiving and Telling: A Study of Iterative Discourse"

Repetition. In any narrative structure the function of repetition as a literary device serves more than just a superficial way of attaching meaning to an object or character. Authors employ these devices to expand significance and implore the reader to actively assign connections in the narrative.  Daniele Chatelain breaks down this idea of repetition within narrative structures in her book “Perceiving and Telling: A Study of Iterative Discourse” and ultimately outlines a way of recognizing these “four dimensional” (187) environments working within stories. Chatelain explains that utilizing iterative discourse in other areas of interpretation (such as narrative structure, character development, story themes, etc.) can render a seemingly one dimensional text into a multi-faceted piece which questions the idea of space and time. 

Ultimately Chatelain produces a unique discourse in her book by challenging the traditional narrative functions of tired literary analyzation and brings her readers into awareness of their textual surroundings.

Daniel Chatelain’s Perceiving and Telling: A Study of Iterative Discourse can be purchased through SDSU Press.