Q:

What is a grand narrative?

A:

Quick Answer

A grand narrative is an idea that is comprehensive in its incorporation of history and knowledge. Another word for a grand narrative is "metanarrative." The term "meta" indicates that it is essentially a story about a story: a description of a body of descriptions.

Know More

Full Answer

The term grand narrative was originally coined by Jean-Francois Lyotard. His 1979 work, "The Postmodern Condition: A Report on Knowledge," criticizes the legitimacy of grand narratives, and their claim to encompass the totality of knowledge on a particular subject.

Examples of grand narratives are philosophies such as democracy, Marxism and the Enlightenment. Lyotard's argument is that in a post-modern world, these philosophies are no longer valid. Instead, smaller, more specific narratives hold more water.

Learn more about Literature

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is a summary of Jonathan Edwards' "Personal Narrative"?

    A:

    Jonathan Edwards' "Personal Narrative" covers the issues of religion, emotionalism, divine will and conversion. Jonathan Edwards uses an autobiographical story form to analyze what factors make a genuine Christian experience. Edwards peers into the conflicts of human emotion, choice and divine will in an attempt to discover the definition of a true religion conversion experience.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the theme of a book?

    A:

    A book's theme is an idea that appears multiple times throughout that book, designed to ask the reader a question that is deep and sometimes deals with questions of right and wrong. Themes emerge as readers make their way through stories.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Are there any books about the history of popcorn?

    A:

    The website of The Popcorn Board, a non-profit organization formed under an Act of Congress, lists two books under The Popcorn Booklist page that are about the history of popcorn: "Popped Culture: The Social History of Popcorn in America" by Andrew F. Smith and "What Makes Popcorn Pop?" by Dave Woodside. Another work listed on the site that contains historical information about popcorn is the compilation "Popcorn!" authored by Elaine Landau and illustrated by Brian Lies.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the history behind the Merriam-Webster dictionary?

    A:

    In 1831, the Merriam brothers opened a printing and book selling business and also bought the rights to Noah Webster's "An American Dictionary of the English Language, Corrected and Enlarged" in 1843, the year Noah Webster passed away. The first Merriam-Webster dictionary was released in 1847 after previous versions of Webster's dictionary did not sell well. Webster's original dictionary was sold at $20 (the price later dropped to $15 for an updated version, but this was still too high to successfully sell), while the Merriam-Webster revised version was sold at the much lower price of $6, allowing it to become much more successful.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore