In Hindsight: Complexity, Contingency, and Narrative Mapping
Narrative Complexity: Cognition, Embodiment, Evolution. Ed. Marina Grishakova and Maria Poulaki. (Frontiers of Narrative). Lincoln: U of Nebraska P, 2019.
31 Pages Posted: 16 Mar 2021
Date Written: 2017
This paper explores the narrative dimensions of Big History and the inherent narrativity of evolutionary theories and explanations, especially as regards their retrospective nature, by addressing the implications of the concepts of evolutionary supervenience, retrospection, and hindsight for a theory of narrative mapping. The narratological dimension in cosmological approaches to complexity has been insufficiently theorized, and some way ahead may be made by emphasizing the narrativity of these accounts and the role that narratology can play in making these conceptual models more theoretically self-conscious. If time is the foundation on which complex emergents are built through unprecedented interactions, narrative is both a fundamental emergent phenomenon and a fundamental tool in understanding the complexity of all phenomena — given that narrative is our way of coming to terms with objects and events as the product of time and path-dependent complexity.
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