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“It’s Like I Said to So-and-So”: Everyday Storying

“It’s Like I Said to So-and-So”: Everyday Storying

(p.107) Five “It’s Like I Said to So-and-So”: Everyday Storying
Another Haul
Charlie Groth
University Press of Mississippi

This chapter explores a story type as more of an activity than an object: the telling of ordinary stories, mainly personal experience narratives (PENs), in order to build relationships and community. While narrative skill may be enjoyed, artistry is secondary to connecting people to people and people to place through sharing conversation and information. Everyday storying practices, such as “How was your day?” conversation, joking, and project sagas are discussed and compared to other know genres such as “craik” and “chit-chat.” The chapter also presents a particular story subtype, the “touchstone story,” by which visitors to the island tell a story of personal connection with the island, fishery, town, or activity to establish relationship. Flipping the expected pattern in which the fishery family or crew is expected to be the authoritative narrative source, family and crew play the community stewardship role of being audience: affirming and incorporating visitors by listening.

Keywords:   personal experience narrative (PEN), community, audience, conversation, joking

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