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Storytelling in OrganizationsFacts, Fictions, and Fantasies$
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Yiannis Gabriel

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780198290957

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198290957.001.0001

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Poetic Modes: Characters, Plots, and Emotions

Poetic Modes: Characters, Plots, and Emotions

Chapter:
(p.59) Chapter 3 Poetic Modes: Characters, Plots, and Emotions
Source:
Storytelling in Organizations
Author(s):

Yiannis Gabriel

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198290957.003.0004

This chapter discusses the classification of stories through the examples of an epic, a tragic, and a comic story. It also proposes a typology of organizational stories that is helpful for the analysis of such stories, accepting that folklorists of literary critics may opt for different typologies. Epic stories usually deal with achievements, contests, and trials and almost always have a happy ending. Comic stories are identifiable by generating laughter, amusement, and levity. Tragic stories, on the other hand, generate pity and sorrow. Each type of story builds a rather different type of relationship between narrator and audience. The narrator of an epic story invites the audience to marvel at the hero's achievements, the narrator of the comic story invites the audience to laugh, and the narrator of the tragic story invites the audience to feel compassion and awe at the protagonist's sufferings. Thus, each story type represents a distinct poetic mode or way of infusing meaning into events.

Keywords:   organizational stories, epic stories, comic stories, tragic stories, narrator, audience, protagonist, poetic mode

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