By Dr Nick Hubble;Philip Tew

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Sample text

In relating the plight of the retired academic protagonist’s ageing father KSL003 summarizes both her opinion of his problems and her recollection of the group discussion concerning him: Dad’s plight is more moving and raises many issues. As so often happens in urban areas his neighbourhood has changed with immigrants, students, different shops and foods. All manner of issues are raised by this theme. Who is responsible for the welfare of the failing old?

If narrative lies at the heart of fiction, reading such narratives architectonically would be essential to understanding in any robust fashion the interplay of forces involved in everyday life if as Ricouer says ‘it is only through the mediation of reading that the literary work attains complete significance [ ... ]’ (Vol. 3, 158). And what Ricouer applies to readership of a literary kind can be seen as relevant to interpreters of cultural narratives: On the one hand, it is through the individual process of reading that the text reveals its ‘structure of appeal’; on the other hand, it is inasmuch as readers participate in the sedimented expectations of the general reading public that they are constituted as competent readers.

I am 66, don’t think of myself as geriatric and certainly would not consider giving up my car (new this year). In fact my brother in law has just got fed up with his car and bought a new one and he is 90, although his family do discourage him from driving on the motorway. There are other structural narrative parallels in such examples. Time and location are crucial to both sets of recollections, as well as intersecting responses, some public, others privately held, but recorded in the diary form.

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