An Empirical Study of Narrative Imagery in Implicit and Explicit Contexts

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Library and Information Science


This study investigates if imagery is an inherent construct to narrative by playing a role in storytelling and comprehension. Visualization activities consist of ones that depend on pictures or physical objects and those do not depend on extraneous visual artifacts. The understandings of both types of visualization will contribute to their application and integration. In light of rapid development of technology and drastic increase of multimedia representations in social communication, applying storytelling approach to system design is increasingly relevant to many researchers who are eager to bring visual thinking to the classroom, alternative to applying physical visual artifacts. In this study, we looked into the cognitive process evoked in the comprehension of narrative and its similarity to imagery as an individual cognition. We transformed a course into conversational narrative and participants were randomly assigned into three sections, two were in narrative text and one was in expository text. Sections 1 and 2 were in narrative text, but only participants from section 1 were prompt for image creation before writing essays. Section 3 was in expository text and participants were also prompt for image creation before writing essays. The independent samples t-test was used to compare the mean scores of three groups on creativity score and word total across the sections. Our study found that narrative was able to activate the imagery world of the participants without giving them further instructions explicitly suggesting so. The implicit imagery context created by reading narratives had a stronger impact on creativity than that of explicit imagery creation context that did not involve of narrative comprehension. The study suggests that narrative innately provides some sort of control to its user cognitively and can be integrated with other types of media in design. (C) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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Computers in Human Behavior





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