Bricolage and storied selves: Young people's assemblages of narrative and identity in an Australian life storytelling project

Mackay, Sasha (2012) Bricolage and storied selves: Young people's assemblages of narrative and identity in an Australian life storytelling project. In Ignite12! QUT Postgraduate Students' Conference, 31 October - 02 November 2012, QUT Creative Industries, Brisbane, Queensland. (Unpublished)


Narrating is simultaneously self-interpretation and self-construction. People make sense of their lives and create their identities through an active process of assembling and applying meaning to memories, experiences, thoughts, actions and passions. Such a process can usefully be described as a bricolage: life narratives are created as an assemblage of scattered experiences and events. Through the particular way in which they are arranged, the storyteller constructs what Paul Ricoeur (1992) calls a “narrative identity”; that is, an identity which is organised through and specific to the story told. Applying this notion of narrative as bricolage to ‘Heywire’ – an Australian youth life storytelling project – this paper discusses the unique affordances that the process of storytelling offers in terms of identity and the way new, digital technologies and the internet augment the features of life narratives. It argues that narrative, in addition to new media, offers important tools through which young people who participate in the Heywire project make sense of personal experiences and craft their own identities in powerful and purposeful ways.

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ID Code: 82815
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: narrative, identity, Ricoeur, new media, bricolage
Divisions: Past > Schools > Creative Writing & Literary Studies
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 [please consult the author]
Deposited On: 26 Mar 2015 23:26
Last Modified: 26 Mar 2015 23:26

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