A story more real than reality
The interactional organization of experientiality
This article examines the concept of experientiality in conversational storytelling from an ethnomethodological perspective, introducing a case in which the narrative mediation of experience fails. The recipient misses the experiential point of the story in the flow of interaction, which stems from other reasons than a failure in sense-making or cognitive comprehension. I discuss my findings with Monika Fludernik’s influential theory of Natural Narratology, according to which all narratives concern experiential exchange between the teller and the recipient, which travels from one consciousness to the other through natural cognitive parameters grounded in real life schemata. Applying conversation analysis, I focus on scrutinizing the details of the turn-by-turn unfolding activities of the participants. My analysis demonstrates that Fludernik’s conception of naturality falls short in capturing the relevancies of naturally occurring storytelling. Ignoring the reflexive intentionality of telling and reception makes Natural Narratology ill-equipped to grasp the dynamics of experientiality in everyday narration.
Keywords: ethnomethodology, experientiality, positioning, social interaction, storytelling, tellability
- Experientiality in action
Published online: 27 September 2018
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