Narrative and the Moving Image

  • Patrick Keating


This chapter applies a rhetorical-functionalist approach to several problems in the philosophy of narrative in the moving image. Drawing on the work of Meir Sternberg, the first section defines narrative in terms of three temporal effects: prospection, retrospection, and re-cognition. The second section argues that this orientation highlights the modality of narrative, asking us to look beyond the causal chain to consider events that might happen but do not. The third section expands the focus beyond film to include television, where many narratives are told in serial form, and the fourth section addresses the problem of the narrator. While offering tentative support for the “implied author” concept, the essay argues against the concept of the cinematic narrator.


Narrative Suspense Surprise Curiosity Time Fictional worlds Serial fiction Narrator Implied author Point of view 


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrick Keating
    • 1
  1. 1.Trinity UniversitySan AntonioUSA

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