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  • A derivative of the Latin word narrare, which means to tell or to relate. Broadly construed, it means the telling of any story or event—as in legal or medical case narrative, journalistic or historical narrative— and therefore applies well beyond any literary context. All narrative is told from a certain viewpoint, which in the case of a first-person narrator, is easily identifiable and often biased or limited. More usually, the narrator is in the third person, but third-person rather than first-person narrative is not necessarily more impartial, and it is important to study the implied assumptions of events narrated in an apparently “objective” manner. Narrative also distinguishes between the “what happened” and the specific sequence in which events are related, which, when analyzed, reveals the ...

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