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Do the Chrons Qualify as Metafiction?

 
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2015 12:01 pm    Post subject: Do the Chrons Qualify as Metafiction? Reply with quote

Given that TC is a writer, and we can choose [along with him] to see the Land and the narrative contained therein as a metaphor for his internal battle against leprosy/his own despiser/or whatever - or as a physically real alternative place to which he has impossibly been transported......

....and given that ultimately that decision might not even matter.......

.....or that it might.....

.......and given the [highly contentious] end of the third series in which we the reader are really left, forced to make our own answers, to make our own 'reader contribution' to the work at a fairly high level {ie we are reqiured to do quite a lot of work ourselves to pull it all into a coherence of sorts [if we can]}.....

Does the work qualify [by what we understand that term to mean] as a work of metafiction?
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2015 2:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Do the Chrons Qualify as Metafiction? Reply with quote

peter wrote:

Does the work qualify [by what we understand that term to mean] as a work of metafiction?


I would say no---though there are a few elements that could be argued as meta, I'm not sure they'd be strong/persuasive arguments.

The "fourth wall," the distance/distinction between us [and our world] is maintained. We may well be connected to it...but we are not contained within it.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2015 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, I don't think so either. It's ambitions lie in other directions. And stories that make you think aren't breaking the third wall by doing so.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2015 3:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had been talking to a collegue at work who used the term 'metanarrative' which I did not understand. I read the wikientry on it then decided to follow on with a glance at 'metafiction'. The first device listed as often being employed was that of using a story about a writer creating a story and I thought "Hey - that's what TC does!" [albeit in his head - maybe].

Travelling down the list I could in a number of places, by a bit of twisting granted, make the idea [semi] fit - hence the post. However, while it's maybe a bit of a stretch to call them Metafiction, the Chrons definitely don't conform to the classical narrative 'story' structure of having beginning, middle and [crucially] an end where all the answers are made plain and the whole is finally and neatly packaged up.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2015 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

peter wrote:
the Chrons definitely don't conform to the classical narrative 'story' structure of having beginning, middle and [crucially] an end where all the answers are made plain and the whole is finally and neatly packaged up.

I don't know, I don't know...I'm not sure the classical structure was quite so dominating and neatly wrapped up, or that the Chron's was quite so not-ended as suggested.
Was the structure really an aspect...or is it something imposed by theorists and the arbiters [mostly self-appointed] of aethetics/quality?
Were there really ends, or just breaks/shifts/convenient stopping points?
Did ends happen because good art required it?
Or because everyone [the creators, the audience, the society] had other demands on their lives and time?
Or because chunks/segments make things simpler, easier to digest?
The whole structure thing seems far squishier, slipperier, leakier, and meta, than "beginning, middle, end," and a bit like inverting form and function on a whim whenever something doesn't "fit."
Is there really an end, even in the most classical?
Sure, in some ways---but despite the meme of Hollywood's dearth of creativity/imagination they didn't invent sequels, prequels, reboots, retellings, remakings, reimaginings...those are as old as the second story ever told [at least...the very first may well have been an altered version of something seen or dreamed.]
Like the idea [discussed somewhere on the Watch] of
"There are only X plots [or subjects or themes] in all great literature."
But you can only get to/show such a thing by:
A) doing serious violence/distortion to stories to make them "fit."
B) ignoring specifics, details, differences.
C) declaring if it has something BESIDES one of "X" then it isn't great, or isn't literature.
D) combinations of the above.

Anyway---the structure/storytelling is sure more real and tidy than breathing and bleeding life. But I don't think it's nearly as set and blueprinted as the theory/model suggests.

Just some blather.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 06, 2015 4:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As a rule of thumb I wouldn't consider it meta unless it was about itself as it were. Very Happy However I'm not familiar with the technical requirements and too lazy to look them up. Very Happy

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 06, 2015 7:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's often the case Av, but from the (small amount of) research I did, I don't think it's an absolute requirement.

V. - very interesting blather nevertheless. I read a small Penguin book of classical literary criticism one time, and I seem to remember either Plato or Aristotle outlining the thinking behind the 'beginning, middle, end' structure we'd all heard of, and how it should work. No doubt though, as you point out, the actual works were much more inventive in their use of narrative structure.

I know nothing about literary criticism, but this area of 'the narrator' and their role in the narrative fascinates me (mainly because I've not given it any thought before). Even if the narrator makes no reference to the reader and the story is all in the third person, they are still there - but in this case we tend to forget their presence. Then we have the narrator who addresses us, but is not involved in the story (which remains third person). Then we move to a point where the narrative becomes first person and the narrator communicates both with us and the other participants. And finally we get to the point where the narrative moves into the 'meta' realm where we might see multiple narrators, or non-narrator participants may address us (letting us know that they know that they are participants in a story), or we, in the hardest meta sense may become participants ourselves and force the narrative to fit our requirements...........and is this not, ultimately, what we do at least a bit, with the chrons?

[edit; actually I think I've beaten this idea to death already {"He fought his battles o'er again and thrice he slew his slain" Laughing}...... so unles anyone wants specifically to make any pertinant point can I broaden the topic by repairing to The Close and starting an examination of the idea of.........
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