Complete Story


Spring 2009, 39:2, pages 189 - 211

Resurrecting the Narrative Paradigm: Identification and the Case of Young Earth Creationism


This article extends the work of conceptual revision of the narrative paradigm in order to more directly and completely account for the inventional possibilities of new narratives, the rhetorical revision of old narratives, and the appeal and acceptance of improbable narrative accounts. It does so by reconceptualizing Burke's concept of identification in the narrative paradigm by expanding identification's critical range. Reconceptualizing identification in the narrative paradigm further expands narrative rationality beyond "the logic of good reasons," provides a theoretical mechanism that accounts for and complements prior theoretical extensions advanced in revision of the narrative paradigm, and provides greater conceptual flexibility for the critical use of narrative in light of poststructuralism. Reconceptualizing the role of identification in the narrative paradigm enriches our understanding of how narratives foster beliefs, attitudes, and actions by accounting more fully for the range of the symbolic resources and processes of identification.

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