Volume 22, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1387-6740
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9935
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Particular attention has been paid in recent years to the functional embedding of narrative within sociocultural practices (De Fina & Georgakopoulou, 2008) and to the role narrative plays in the construction of identity (Bamberg, 2011). Narrative practices, though, are still equated with narrating activities, with “a form of action, of performance” (Blommaert, 2006) at a given moment in discursive time. This article argues that when narrative is embedded in particularly complex sociocultural practices such as the adversarial trial, it is not sufficient to consider activities of narrating and their immediate discursive environment. For while participants orient to narrative in a context such as the trial, the infrequency of identifiable narrative discourse can give the analytical impression that narrative is peripheral to the overall practice. The model of Narrative Navigation outlined here is the first systematic attempt to make salient the fundamentally dynamic, multifaceted and rhetorical nature of narrative in adversarial jury trial. The model should provide a more holistic picture of narrativity in such contexts and should enhance language-based discourse analytic approaches to narrative.


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