Walter Fisher’s (1984, 1987) narrative paradigm theory, for example, uses structuralist constructs of narrative rationality and coherence (fidelity and probability) to a priori decide which are good or bad stories.”

Fisher (1984, 1987) argues that humans are storytelling animals, communicating through their stories, and that they construct “good reasons” for believing and acting upon some stories, while rejecting others. The reasons for accepting or rejecting a story come from logical and value-based reasoning (Fisher, 1984).

Key concepts in narrative paradigm theory are a narrative’s “probability” and “fidelity” (1987: 5).

  • Probability is the spectator’s evaluation of a story’s coherence; “does it hang together?” “Does it ring true?” Probability addresses a story’s credibility by analyzing internal consistency, missing elements, and the consistency of character behavior given what the spectators know of the storyteller or character in similar stories.
  • Fidelity analyzes the truthfulness of a story “does it ring true to other stories of the same type?” “Does it pass the spectator’s tests of rational and value laden reasons?” Fidelity gazes the story’s rational reasons (in rational argumentation theory) and assesses its value laden “good reasons” (in terms of ethics and validity or soundness,[Formist: Narratology David Boje, June 30, 1999–] 

With the Narrative Paradigm Theory perspective in mind, we will begin with a video by George Gerbner, one of the most preeminent communication researchers of the past century. He was Dean of the Annenberg School of Communication for many years. He takes a Narrative Paradigm perspective on communication, emphasizing the importance of story telling for human experience, and explores the implications of the current mass media system on the way in which individuals view the world.

In what ways does Dr. Gerbner think that casting and the emphasis on violence affect our society’s ways of thinking about crime policy, welfare policy, and civil rights? 2. Do you think Dr. Gerbner’s studies give television too much or not enough credit for shaping the way we think about ourselves and the world?

Answer the following questions using the articles attached below

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