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Re: Narrative ?
> I think I now understand how I can get Bear to answer some specific
> questions about the Narrative. When in doubt, ask nicely!
Thanks, Aaron. It's not that I feel insulted by Lemoine, I'm just
flabbergasted by his private connection to the TRUTH.
Before answering your questions, I must admit that there are no
"rules" for narrative debate. Weber debaters take different positions
in different rounds. Much like the way people extend T or their
favorite disad in different ways in different rounds. Any objection
is fair ground. We ask only that people listen to our narrative
attempts to respond to these objections.
> Some concerns/questions:
> 1) How does a judge evaluate a "narrative" proof competing with a
> "non-narrative" proof?
> The way I understood Steve's responses to my earlier posts was that he
> wasn't saying everybody should narrate - just that the "narrative" should
> be accepted as a legitmate form of argument.
> QUICK NOTE : I'm placing "narrative" in quotation marks because of the
> earlier comments by Ken Broda-Bahm about all arguments being part of a
> If this is the case - is there an easier way for a judge to determine a
> winner? Is the "narrative" just another form of evidence to justify a claim?
Essentially. We feel it is a form of justification that transcends
current conceptualizations of evidence. It speaks also on an
emotional and experiential level that is often precluded by current
approaches to evidence usage.
> It seems to me that unresolvable situations like the one that Jordan faced
> at GSL would be MORE common if the negative chose to debate
> "traditionally" and ignored the "narrative" and tried to outweigh.
The GSL experience was atypical. Those post-modernist Chico guys had
the integrity not to run exclusion arguments. Their personal
philosophy served as a great source of mutual narrative regarding the
detrimental aspects of competition. I watched the whole round and
found it to be one of the most enlightening and sincere experiences
I've ever seen in debate. Four experienced debaters talking about how
this activity might be changed to focus on debaters learning instead
> 2) What advocacy does the affirmative adopt in "narrating"?
> The way Steve explains it some sort of change is advocated in the
> "narrative"...my concern is that the change would be unclear. I'm getting
> some inconsistent responses on this issue. Some have responded by saying
> that fiat is an illusion and irrelevant and some have said "you can
> debate the advocated change." Which is it? I'm sorta confused on this one.
I don't see the contradiction. Fiat is imaginary. Benefits and disads
are second-level abstractions that mean less than the real
interactions taking place in the round. Weber's narratives clearly
imply, however, a "wrong" and clear implications are made concerning
actions to counter that wrong.
> 3) If change is advocated, what ground does the negative have if the
> change isn't specified?
> How do you argue a "narrative" case in a "traditional" sense if the
> change advocated is amorphous. Does the negative ground become "change is
Well, when we told stories about how racism was too high a price to
pay for development, USAFA countered by reading the Constitution back
in attempt to prove that our Constitution made racism illegal. We
thought that was kind of naive, but two of the judges bought it in
I would attempt to discern the policy being implied by the stories. I
would use c-x very carefully to ferret out the intentions of the
narrative-running team. I would attempt to hold the narrative (if
being run as an aff.) to a standard of applying to the resolution. I
could choose to run a counter-narrative which seeks to undermine the
story of the aff. I could present reasons why this hurts debate and
should be excluded. I could just run my standard neg dump after
deciding the implied policies in the narrative. Do what ever you want.
> These are only a few concerns. I honestly don't believe "narratives" have
> much value - but I would like to know if these concerns can be
> surmounted. Color me skeptical.
Unfortunately, space for minority forms of communication have never
been highly priviliged in our society. It's obvious that what we do
in debates is valuable, but the form we have allowed it to evolve
into is one that excludes many individuals due to its foreignness. If
we are serious about widening the nature of this activity to include
more diverse individuals, I urge we allow the creation of
communicative space. Perhaps you are right. Maybe the strategic value
of this approach is low. That's not the reason we do it.
Skepticism is fine by me. Exclusion, I think, however, deserves
Michael "Bear" Bryant Internet: email@example.com
Director of Forensics Home: 801-399-4253
Department of Communication Office: 801-626-7186
Weber State University Fax: 801-626-7975
Ogden, UT 84408-1903
Archive created by Jonathan Stanton (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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