Reawakening the Grand Narrative
By Jeff Gomez
While traveling a few weeks back I had the good fortune to meet an Egyptian scholar. “Isn’t it wonderful,” I said, “how the Internet and social media were used by your people to free themselves from an oppressive regime?”
His response surprised me: “Oh no, Facebook and Twitter didn’t free us. Yes, they were tools we used along with diligent housewives, copy machines and handwritten flyers. The true tipping point happened late last year when our parliament retained power with the usual brazen wave of election fraud, corruption and thievery. The difference this time is that they didn’t even bother to lie to us about it. They didn’t even tell us a story.”
As someone who has spent the last decade advising the entertainment industry on how best to extend big movie and videogame properties across an array of strange new media platforms, I’ve had to think about story from any number of perspectives. What I’m coming to understand is this: Story is more powerful than any weapon. More than warriors, storytellers have influenced the way we’ve evolved as a race.
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