Storyteller by Walter Benjamin

Storyteller by Walter Benjamin

The issue dealt with in this article is how the story culture became degenerated in modern society where experience was functionalized. Reduction of story culture means that an ability of exchanging the experience is being deteriorated. I sometimes realize how most of the subjects in the communication with the senior or my parents dealt with contents of enlightenment and also with funny episodes derived from personal experience based on the history of contemporary era that could not be seen in the history book on sales at book stores. In addition, I found myself indirectly experiencing the situations shown in the story and preparing my heart ready to hear about what I did not experience before in the discourse shared with my peers or those younger than me. Hereupon, storytellers memorize the stories they experienced in person or heard about from others in a form of fantasy conveying them to audiences. In addition, authors are separated from readers, while storytellers communicate with audiences in person. Therefore, sharing stories with audiences is of a new physical experience. Stories hereto are communicated through bodies of storyteller that the medium of discourse is the human body.

Novel is regarded as a sign that oral culture is degenerated. As it is distributed in the form of book, authors and readers are separated from each other. Novels are an outcome of experience that is near to an object shared by thoughts of an individual. Therefore, audiences and readers reflect an alienated existence but not share their own experience. As for another example, many of other media conveying much of information (newspaper, movie, and broadcasting) only deliver the value of information in an instantaneous moment but cannot reinterpret or reproduce the meaning. Types of communication available only in the instantaneous moment are non-persistent, but stories are not consumable or perishable but maintain the survival power. 

Discourses are closely related to stories of storyteller. They are left on the trace of storytellers in any form. When storytellers select media in a form different from their physical bodies (delineation of the stories on the canvas as a drawing in case of fine artists), speaker’s narration must be directly expressed to have a face-to-face effect on the discourse. Furthermore, an effort on participation of both narrators and audiences is inevitable in the discourse.  


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