Focus of the Detoxing Narratives-Project

Stories and tales form a cultural and social background of groups, communities and societies. The possibility to commonly refer to agreed important events and experiences made, brings about a feeling of shared history which is central for the constitution of groups and communities. Many of these stories and tales are being shared in every-day life without further reflection. Thus these become common cultural goods. Where there is no common ground, the implicitness of these references becomes obsolete.

In the following two cases the development of a common reference frame seems impossible or at least impeded: In the first case someone did not grow up as part of the respective cultural context, i.e. a foreigner enters the community as a newcomer. Second, in order to access the complex levels of the reference frame a high level of language and intellectual ability is required.

The focus on use of complex written reference implies an exclusion of those who do not possess the necessary language skills and persons with learning difficulties due to a perceived inability of understanding and reproducing stories.Our project aims to tackle the above mentioned challenges at two main points:

  1. Reinventing stories: We presume that stories and experiences that make up the reference frame are not to consist of mere reproduction of traditions. On the contrary they make up a part of daily lives in community where people do refer to traditions but constantly reinterpret and broaden them by current experiences. This idea of continuous reinvention and performance enables entry points for newcomers and their contribution to the stories told. Thus leading to the generation of new stories and provision of new access points.
  2. Reinventing the way stories are being told: Considering the invention of new stories, we also need to consider new ways of how these will be told. Leaving the strict reference to written traditions aside, which require high levels of ability to understand abstracted knowledge, is to open up new modes of accessibility. Thus enabling inclusive spaces of generating and performing stories and exchanging about experience beyond language and intellectual abilities.

Workshop on Nov, 29th at University of Vienna

We warmly invite you to join our workshop!