A story within a story, within sometimes yet another story, as in, for example, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. As in Mary Shelley's work, the form echoes in structure the thematic search in the story for something deep, dark, and secret at the heart of the narrative. The form thus also resembles the psychoanalytic process of uncovering the unconscious behind various levels of repressive, obfuscating narratives put in place by the conscious mind. As is often the case and Shelley's work is no exceptiona different individual often narrates the events of a story in each frame.
Origins[ edit ] Some of the earliest known frame stories are those from ancient Egypt, including one found in the Papyrus Westcarthe Tale of the Shipwrecked Sailorand The Eloquent Peasant.
This format had flexibility in that various narrators could retain the stories they liked or understood, while dropping ones they didn't and adding new ones they heard from other places. This occurred particularly with One Thousand and One Nights, where different versions over the centuries have included different stories.
The use of a frame story in which a single narrative is set in the context of the telling of a story is also a technique with a long history, dating back at least to the beginning section of the Odysseyin which the narrator Odysseus tells of his wandering in the court of King Alcinous.
A set of stories[ edit ] This literary device acts as a convenient conceit for the organization of a set of smaller narratives, which are either of the devising of the author or taken from a previous stock of popular tales, slightly altered by the author for the purpose of the longer narrative.
Sometimes a story within the main narrative can be used to sum up or encapsulate some aspect of the framing story, in which case it is referred to in literary criticism by the French term mise en abyme. A typical example of a frame story is One Thousand and One Nightsin which the character Shahrazad narrates a set of fairy tales to the Sultan Shahriyar over many nights.
Many of Shahrazad's tales are also frame stories, such as Tale of Sindbad the Seaman and Sindbad the Landsmana collection of adventures related by Sindbad the Seaman to Sindbad the Landsman. Extensive use of this device is found in Ovid 's Metamorphoseswhere the stories nest several deep, to allow the inclusion of many different tales in one work.
The main heroine's diary is framed by the narrator's story and letters. Mary Shelley 's novel Frankenstein is another good example of a book with multiple framed narratives. In the book, Robert Walton writes letters to his sister describing the story told to him by Victor Frankenstein ; Frankenstein's story contains the creature's story; the creature's story even briefly contains the story of a family among whom it had been living.
Frame stories have also appeared in other media, such as comic books.
Neil Gaiman 's comic book series The Sandman featured a story arc called Worlds End which consisted of frame stories, and sometimes even featured stories within stories within stories.
Frame stories are often organized as a gathering of people in one place for the exchange of stories. Each character tells his or her tale, and the frame tale progresses in that manner.
Historically famous frame stories include Chaucer 's Canterbury Talesabout a group of pilgrims who tell stories on their journey to Canterbury; and Boccaccio 's Decameron about a group of young aristocrats escaping the Black Death in the countryside and spending the time telling stories.
The Return of Rip Van Winklepainting by John QuidorSometimes only one storyteller exists, and in this case there might be different levels of distance between the reader and author. In this mode, the frame tale can become more fuzzy.
Here the frame includes the world of the imagined Crayon, his stories, and the possible[ clarification needed ] reader who is assumed to play along and "know" who Crayon is.
Donald Westlake 's short story "No Story" is a parody of frame stories, in which a series of narrators start to tell stories, each of which contains a narrator who starts to tell a story, culminating in a narrator who announces that there will be no story. Essentially, it is a frame story without a story to be framed.
|Included in this Article||Frame Story Definition of Frame Story Frame story is a story set within a story, narrativeor movie, told by the main or the supporting character. A character starts telling a story to other characters, or he sits down to write a story, telling the details to the audience.|
One common one is to draw attention to the narrator's unreliability. By explicitly making the narrator a character within the frame story, the writer distances him or herself from the narrator; she or he may also characterize the narrator to cast doubt on the narrator's truthfulness.
Wodehouse 's stories of Mr MullinerMulliner is made a fly fisherman in order to cast doubt on the outrageous stories he tells. The movie Amadeus is framed as a story an old Antonio Salieri tells to a young priest, because the movie is based more on stories Salieri told about Mozart than on historical fact.
Another use is a form of procatalepsiswhere the writer puts the readers' possible reactions to the story in the characters listening to it. In The Princess Bride the frame of a grandfather reading the story to his reluctant grandson puts the cynical reaction a viewer might have to the romantic fairytale into the story in the grandson's persona, and helps defuse it.
This is the use when the frame tells a story that lacks a strong narrative hook in its opening; the narrator can engage the reader's interest by telling the story to answer the curiosity of his listeners, or by warning them that the story began in an ordinary seeming way, but they must follow it to understand later actions, thereby identifying the reader's wondering whether the story is worth reading to the listeners'.
Such an approach was used by Edith Wharton in her novella Ethan Fromein which a nameless narrator hears from many characters in the town of Starkfield about the main character Ethan's story. A specialized form of the frame is a dream visionwhere the narrator claims to have gone to sleep, dreamed the events of the story, and then awoken to tell the tale.
In medieval Europe, this was a common device, used to indicate that the events included are fictional; Geoffrey Chaucer used it in The Book of the DuchessThe House of FameParlement of Foulesand The Legend of Good Women the last also containing a multi-story frame story within the dream.
In modern usage, it is sometimes used in works of fantasy as a means toward suspension of disbelief about the marvels depicted in the story. Tolkienin his essay " On Fairy-Stories " complained of such devices as unwillingness to treat the genre seriously.
Lewis Carroll 's Alice stories Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass includes such a frame, but unlike most usages, the stories themselves use dream-like logic and sequences; most dream frames frame stories that appear exactly as if occurring in real life.A career plan essay rights phrases for essay introduction japanese internment conclusion sample essay love story what is life skills essay diploma essay for and against conclusion kal?plar?
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For example, in The Thousand and One Nights, the frame consists of the story of Scheherazade, who avoids death by telling her king-husband a story every night and leaving it incomplete.
In both cases the writer needs to have a pretty good reason for going this route. The kind of foundation you choose for your essay depends in part on your subject matter and on your own personal preference.
If you do it well, the structure will help you tell a better story by framing your material, creating momentum, and emphasizing your point. A frame story, also referred to in literature as a frame narrative, is in essence a story within a story.
These tales involve a narrator in one setting telling another story that takes place in a different time and place. A frame story (also known as a frame tale or frame narrative) is a literary technique that sometimes serves as a companion piece to a story within a story, whereby an introductory or main narrative is presented, at least in part, for the purpose of setting the stage either for a more emphasized second narrative or for a set of shorter stories.
Frame story is a story set within a story, narrative, or movie, told by the main or the supporting character.
A character starts telling a story to other characters, or .