Narrative (n). 

> A spoken or written account of connected events; a story

> The narrated part of a literary work, as distinct from dialogue

> The practice or art of telling stories

> A representation of a particular situation or process in such a way as to reflect or conform to an overarching set of aims or values

 

 

Storytelling is an intrinsic part of being human. From Neolithic cave paintings through to a contemporary coffee shop's Instagram feed, narrative and the mechanisms we employ to build a continuing story are fundamental to the effective communication of information and ideas.

As individuals today, we absorb endless waves of images, events, conversations, videos and written text; our minds working overtime to consume, extract, prioritise and archive them in the dusty vaults of our memory. The most memorable trinkets are stored in prized positions; accessible and retrievable. These are the ones we visit often –consciously and subconsciously - in order to better inform our unique perceptions.

With such a vibrant assortment of multimedia at our fingertips, instantaneously re-ordered and replaced on a minute-to-minute basis, it's difficult to determine the trinkets from the throwaways. Value, in short, has never been so difficult to define.

PETRIe believes an intrinsic, and indeed essential, formula to define value can be found in the process of storytelling - not simply the literal representation of beginning, middle and end or establishing setting, introducing conflict and bringing resolution, but more fundamentally, storytelling as the communication of a considered idea or perspective though intelligent execution. 

The result of such storytelling should lead the audience to recognise the intended purpose within an innovative and original framework. It should provoke an emotional reaction in order to evoke a reconsideration of the subject matter. Utilising this humanistic and time-honoured approach, we hope to create content that holds value beyond this fleeting moment, adaptable and appreciable apart from any time or trend. 

We believe in nurturing and supporting the stories that our community wants to tell, cultivating valid, considered statements involving forethought and rigorous development; representing diversity in a genuine and thought-provoking way. We are determined to define value of all mediums through substance alone.

This issue of the eMagazine explores the application of narrative and its perceived value to society. Anna Haze reviews Karl Lagerfeld's reinterpretation of what contemporary fashion means, his vast influence and the stories that a brand must form in a society where there is never enough of a good thing.

Eileen Slade discusses the concept and development of PETRIe 67 and Editorial and Features Director, Grace Carter, talks to multi-sensory think-tank and creative creative collective, Crossmodalism, whilst also delving into PYMCA, the largest archive of youth culture development, in her interview with archive coordinator, Jamie Brett.

Words: Benjamin Thapa