Crossing the Threshold: Teaching Transmedial Narratology with Videogames and Film
Abstract: The purpose of this essay is threefold. First, to look at the curriculum of English in the upper secondary classroom and what the role of narratology is. Secondly, an analysis of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (2001) and Journey (2012) through Campbell’s monomyth and how the stages are presented to the viewer/player. Lastly, how these media and analysis are beneficial in teaching narratology in the English upper secondary classroom in Sweden. The content analysis is shaped with the narratological concepts laid out by Huisman (2005), Bal (1997), narrative descriptors by Tekinbaş & Zimmerman (2004), as well as concepts relating to transmedial narratology from Ryan & Thon (2004). The media are chosen for their relevance to upper secondary students and their narrative clarity. The essay, with narratology as the tool, and the hero’s journey as the lens, highlights how the same narrative structure is represented in vastly different ways based on each medium’s idiosyncrasies. Through analysis and subsequent discussion, there are several key points, such as ‘media blindness’ and ‘media relativism’ which needs to be addressed with learners to facilitate discussions about transmedial narratology and develop all-around communicative skills among learners.
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