Hi Emmanuel. Yes thanks. I’ll add a caveat, cuz I suspect I know what will come next.

All cultures possess a myriad of story forms, nuanced and otherwise, including the hero’s journey. In Western story forms over the last three centuries there have been movements between multiple narratives e.g. Canterbury Tales to causality and singular points of view e.g. Robinson Crusoe, to multiple strands again e.g. whodunnit novels.

That’s creativity at work. As one genre becomes saturated new authors look for new styles. In film, it’s the equivalent of the ensemble piece vs the lead character with a well defined narrative genre.

Hence a film is defined as noir and gangster or sci fi. When you look at Hindi language films, the ones I grew up with e.g Sholay, The Burning Train etc, they can mix styles. One minute it’s a musical and the next a revenge thriller. West African storytellers, around an evening meal, whilst growing up in Ghana would regale us with narratives that wove in an out of each other, sprinkled with a touch of mysticism. Films by say Ousmane Sembène and Kwah Ansah would played with themes more recognisable in amongst their communities.

Not withstanding internationalism which has sought to standardise communications and storytelling, embedded within cultures are behaviours, beliefs, cues that characterise modes of storytelling, that is affected to by class structures.

I’m reminded of an incident, which in recounting, is not to be taken out of context and perceived as racists. A group of Chinese students visited the US, and on their last day were asked if there was anything memorable they would take back with them. Yes, was the reply. People in the US have funny eyes! Herein lies a plenum of narratives.

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Top Writer & Creative Technologist, Int. Award Winner. Cinemajournalist. Cardiff Uni @jomec. PhD (Dublin). Visiting Prof UBC, Ex BBC/C4News. Apple profiled.

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