Narratives are the wealth of nations: they animate life, sustain culture and cultivate humanity. They regulate and empower us, bringing both joy and discontent. And they are always embedded in ubiquitous power: stories shape power, and power shapes story.
In this provocative and original study, Ken Plummer takes us on a journey to explore some of the key dimensions of this narrative power. His main focus is on what he calls ‘narratives of suffering’ and how these change through transformative narrative actions across an array of media forms. The modern world is in crisis, and long-standing narratives are being challenged in five major directions: through deep inequalities, global state complexities, digital risks, the perpetual puzzle of truth and the ever-emerging contingencies of time. Asking how we can build sustainable stories for a better future, the book advocates the cultivation of a narrative hope, a narrative wisdom and a politics of narrative humanity.
Narrative Power suggests novel directions for enquiry, discusses a raft of innovative ideas and concepts, and sets a striking new agenda for research and action.