Remembering apparent behavior: A study of narrative mediation

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The present experiment systematically investigates the role of narrative templates (Wertsch, 2002) in remembering. To stimulate the construction of a diversity of narratives I used Heider and Simmel’s (1944) celebrated “apparent behavior” film, in which geometric shapes moving around a screen are seen by subjects as agents involved in a kind of story. Which narratives are used, as well as the “strength” subjects used them with, is then compared with what subjects remember and how they remember it. The relationship is not conceived causally (as if one variable determined or predicted another) but rather as constraints on an agent’s constructive potentials. My analysis involves attending to both general trends found across the sample, as well as the particularities of single cases, especially atypical cases. In other words, I use patterns found at the level of the sample to choose which subjects to attend to in the idiographic analysis. Generalization still moves from single case to general model and back to single case, but the movement is facilitated by analysis at the level of the sample as a whole.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationYearbook of Idiographic Science
EditorsSergio Salvatore, Jaan Vaisiner, Joan Travers Simon, Alessandro Gennaro
Number of pages31
Place of PublicationRome
PublisherFirerq Publishing Group
Publication date2011
ISBN (Print) 978-88-6538-014-7
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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