Is Storytelling a Way of Knowing

The term storying telling needs a definition that is widely accepted, since it could refer to a narrow set of things, or could accomodate a whole range of things. For example, one person might say storytelling is all about telling a story, regardless of whether it is true or not; another might say that storytelling only applies to fiction, not non fiction.

If we take storytelling in a broader sense, we could potentially say that it is a way of knowing. However, this would mean that we must classify even the most mundane, everyday thoughts as a story. For example, I just turned my laptop on could be a story itself.

On the other hand, storytelling could be considered as part of other ways of knowing. There are 2 main formats human thoughts come in. The first is through words/language. The second is intuition. Language makes up a large part of concious processing (not all). We could say “I ressurected the demon yesterday”. Although that is a story, it required language not only to express it but also to understand it. Furthermore, as I mentioned in my points about the African native tribe, language is required to even comprehend and/or construct the story. To give an example, one tribe had words for 1, 2 , 3 but no 4. Even if you told them “I have 4 heads”, they would not understand the story. Therefore we can conclude that every word that is used in the story is derived for language.

The other “though process” is subconcious. We could consider this to be a result of intuition, or gut feeling. You would not be telling yourself a story. For example, I walk into a haunted house, and feel “something is not right”. This is not a story (unless you make the definition for storytelling broad)

Consequently, unless storytelling can give more solid and convincing evidence to back it up as a way of knowing, I would disagree with the contention that storytelling is a way of knowing.

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