speaking of ireland, & whose island…

5 03 2007

bono on narrative, power, & mining the dark for embers (even when or maybe especially when it’s a trick)

i’ve always known, and tried to convince my students, although they usually give me the same you’re-on-crack look my friends tend to when i launch off into these crazy little theories of mine, that to save the world, to make genuine changes, to create realities worth living in, “we need to get better at storytelling.” looks like (sing this line) i’m not the only one.

(& thx, n, for the link, & for thinking of me, & for not saying one sarcastic thing about it!)

i will concede, btw., to be fair to the IM conversation i just provoked, that “window in the skies” is a pretty boring song, musically, lyrically… but it’s a hymn, y’all. those don’t tend to be the tricksiest compositions ever penned. why we needed a hymn that sounded like a beatles song right at this particular cultural juncture i’m not quite sure, but, hey, nothing wrong with spelling out the obvious for the folks who need it done.

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7 responses

5 03 2007
pictsy

I think it’s true. Numbers can be impressive, but people don’t actually get motivated to do anything until they feel something and empathize.

5 03 2007
tyra

and we depend on story to tell us what things mean. that’s how we learn about the world, & it’s how we share the world with one another.
it’s hard to say much about that because it seems so wholly fundamental, but it’s still rare enough a recognized truth that i’m always delighted to hear it coming in from unexpected quarters.
if i could re-do my dissertation, & maybe the last 6 years of my academic career, that would be what i was writing about.

5 03 2007
walkinthewilds

You’re right. Storytelling is the way we connect with people and convince them of things that require a more complicated answer than yes or no.
And when you meet a truly adept storyteller, it’s a whole different world.

5 03 2007
donnickcottage

I thought the discussion on chocolate underpants to be particularly relevant at this juncture. I’m hoping to changethe world through the giggle factor. I’m sure it won’t work, but at least I’ve got my ass in the game:)

5 03 2007
pooh_gal

fisher
seriously. narrative paradigm. storytelling. fisher.

6 03 2007
tyra

Re: fisher
nerds r us.
bono gets fisher.
i love it.

6 03 2007
robotapocalypse

“Hey, I’d meet with Lucifer if I thought it would do any good,” Bono said.
Ahem. “We need to get better at storytelling,” Bono said, sitting in the 22nd floor of the office of Graydon Carter, the editor of Vanity Fair. “Bill Gates tells me this all the time. We’ve got to get better at telling the success stories of Africa in addition to the horror stories. And this magazine tells great stories.”
Sorry Bones, but you want the past tense, not the subjunctive.
& for not saying one sarcastic thing about it!
Couldn’t be helped. ‘Twas too good to let go, plus it saves me making an entire post about it and pointing to the new Vietnamese kid Angie Jolie just bought. (That’s three she’s up to, by the way.)
On the narrative thing. . . that’s more or less my “theory.” I don’t have all the prestigious Frenchie names to attach to it to make it official yet, but between Peter Brown, Mike Foucault, and Mike Bakhtin, I’m convinced that storytelling is where it’s at.

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