The Voices of Narrative, Lyric, and Drama

Frederick J. Ruf

in Entangled Voices

Published in print March 1997 | ISBN: 9780195102635
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199853458 | DOI:
The Voices of Narrative, Lyric, and Drama

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It is an exaggeration to declare that literature comes in just three different kinds of voices and, moreover, to state with some certainty exactly what those three voices are. This chapter tries to make the distinctions among narrative, lyric, and drama. Those who study narrative with a religious interest focus on three aspects as defining narrative: the interaction of character and action, sequential time, and coherence and intelligibility. This chapter frequently refers to Ronald Thiemann and Stanley Hauerwas as representatives of those who have a special commitment to narrative and who feel as though their religious thought benefits from that genre. Their discussions of narrative are unusually lucid, and the advantages that they see in narrative are those most commonly cited. Unfortunately, even their exact treatments of narrative do not explain what is definitively narrative, that is, what distinguishes it from the other basic genres.

Keywords: Ronald Thiemann; Stanley Hauerwas; narrative; lyric; drama; voices; genres; coherence; intelligibility

Chapter.  4729 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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