Week 3, comics are interesting
Discuss how this approach to constructing a narrative changes the roles of the reader and the author in the process of narrative transmission.
ok, to start off, we need to look at the 'before and after' effects when we talk about changes.
it sounds a bit cliché to me. In old narratives, authors are generally given the 'authority', as suggested by the name 'author'. Be it films, books, symphonies and etc, the author did the job of choice and selection, as well as sequencing and making sure that it begins with a beginning and ends with an ending. He has to ensure that kernel is kernel, and satellites are satellites. The readers, on the other hand, are quite obedient. they may not be satisfied with how narratives is going on. they may not want to see their heroes or heroines fall into the traps and hardships; however, the author has decided the plot, and all what the reader could do is to follow the linear narrative towards the end, and at most complain to his/her friend about the unneccesary trouble the heroes/heroines have gone through. well, but relating to personal experiences, this is the interesting and fun part of such 'non-interactive' narrative transmission. you try to put yourself in another's shoes as you follow the plot. it would be, actually, very dull if the plot is kind of 'flat'.
then we talk about legrady's approach to construct his narrative transmission. Firstly, there is the 'blurring', or breakdown of the distinction between the author and the reader. the author, in this case, would still do the choice and selection job, and a little bit (well actually it's quite A LOT) of sequencing, but putting all those links and hyperlinks. The readers would do most of the sequencing job, and construct 'their own narratives'. the reason that i used the inverted commas is that, if we think twice, the narratives are not entirely the readers' own. yes, they make their choices and go through their own paths, however, the linkages between the nodes are pre-set by the author. Does the reader really gets what he wants? i guess that the answer is a partial yes or partial no. what the reader really get, after 'constructing' his own narrative, is always a mediated version from the author of the work. or to put in other words, in the 'old narratives', the author rigidly fixed the events, existents and settings, while in 'interactive narratives' as suggested by Legrady, the author provides choices for events, existents and setting, but subtlely confines the way the reader reconstruct the narratives, through pre-set computer programming, i.e., the limit for the reader's 'play'.
we may view from the other perspective of 'transcoding'. it appears to me that the author in Legrady's cases, are becoming the collectors and moderators of some kind of database, the computer media is the interface while the readers become the users of the data base, who would search and construct their 'narratives' thanks to the benefits of digitalisation, modularity, variability and automation. so maybe we can view it as an example of how the cultural layer of computerisation gives its impact on the metamorphosis of narratives.
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Write about the narrative that your group has chosen for project 1. Why have you chosen this work? How might you approach the task of re-configuring it as an interactive piece? Be prepared to discuss your group’s choice of work in class on Thursday.
Well we haven't really decided. two options now. one is to run lola run. we would do the snapshots of the movies and rearrange them into some other sequences in which the readers may make decisions at branching points. captions may also be added so that the same picture may have different meanings in the plots. and maybe, from nani's point of view for the narrative. the other idea is the snow white story. kind of play. the setting is like in a trial. the snow white and the queen would defend for themselves while there would be witnesses as well. the gist is to present the narrative from different perspectives, and in the end, allow the audience to choose who should be punished.
so basically thanks to modularity and digital representation we are able to do such kind of projects. we try to get the involvment of the audience, letting them to make the decisions, thus achieving kind of interactivity. the branching of pictures provides opportunities for the readers to construct their own narratives and have different endings, different from the fixed plots in old media