A frame story (also known as a frame tale, frame narrative, sandwich narrative, or intercalation) is a literary technique that serves as a companion piece to a story within a story, in which an introductory or main narrative sets the stage for either a more emphasized second narrative or a collection of shorter stories. The term "frame narrative" may also be applied to novels or other long works that contain several short stories.
Frame narratives are common in oral storytelling traditions and in some written forms such as legends, myths, fables, and anecdotes. They are used in comics and graphic novels as well. In cinema and television, they are often found in programs that mix documentary with fictional content (such as drama films, sports documentaries, and reality TV shows).
Frame narratives can also be found in many types of literature besides comics, including fairy tales, novels, and poems. These various forms of literature use different techniques to achieve the same effect as a frame narrative. For example, a fairy tale usually starts with a brief introduction that sets the scene and gives some background information on the main characters before launching into the story itself. This is similar to the function of a frame narrative which introduces both the setting and the characters for the primary story.
A frame narrative is a companion text that is used to place the reader in the context of the events with a story inside a story; to introduce or emphasize a second narrative. A character or the storyteller can introduce this. In film and television, a frame narrative is any sequence of shots that forms a background to another scene or episode.
There are many examples of frame narratives in literature. One example is The Frame Narrative by Vladimir Nabokov. This novel consists of eight sections that each have a title page containing copyright information and a foreword discussing literature in general and this particular book in particular. These pages are not part of the main body of the work but provide a framework for understanding what is going on within the story.
Another example is The Benefit of the Doubt by John Grisham. This novel has five chapters and each one begins with a summary paragraph explaining some aspect of legal practice. These paragraphs are called "frame paragraphs" because they provide context for what comes next in the chapter.
In Shakespeare's Henry IV parts 1 and 2 there is a frame narrative at the beginning of each part. The first part is about King Henry IV and his struggle to become king. The second part is about King Henry IV trying to keep the kingdom together while he is still young enough to do it himself.
A narrative inside a story, within still another story, like in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, for example. The form, like Mary Shelley's, mimics in structure the story's thematic search for something deep, dark, and secret at the center of the narrative. Narratives within narratives are common in art as well as literature.
In film theory, the term "narrative frame" refers to the visual representation of time on screen. The concept was first proposed by Christian Metz in his book The Imaginary Signifier: Psychoanalysis and the Cinema (1967). For Metz, all films present us with a series of discontinuous images that cannot be experienced as such because they always occur within a broader context. This broader context provides some sense of continuity to the image sequence but also introduces elements of disruption and ambiguity. He argues that the cinema exploits our psychological need for narrative by using techniques such as cutting, framing, and dissolves to create the impression of continuous action even when the images are actually separated by gaps in time.
Today, many scholars consider the narrative frame to be not only the visible portion of a film but also its most important element, if not its main focus. The camera angles, colors, and costumes used by directors to shape our perception of time and space are all examples of framing. Films can use different types of frames to achieve various effects.
Storytelling Framework analysis shows that the Heart of Darkness uses a story framework. The story framework is most apparent in the use of flashback scenes and in the juxtaposition of events that form a pattern or analogy. These techniques serve to explain things about Joseph Conrad's characters and their situation that might otherwise be difficult or impossible to understand.
The Heart of Darkness tells two parallel stories that are intertwined at various points. The first story follows the adventures of Marlow, a young Englishman, as he travels through Belgian Congo (present-day Democratic Republic of the Congo) on his way home to England. Along the way, he meets with several other travelers who have similar missions. All of them are searching for Joseph Conrad, an old friend of Marlow's who has recently died. As they travel together, the people they meet and experiences they have help them learn more about themselves and what really matters in life.
The second story is that of Kurtz, a wealthy German trader living in the Belgian Congo. He is one of the leaders of a company that is exploiting the region's resources, especially its human resources. However, something is wrong with Kurtz.
Readers are led from the initial narrative into one or more other stories inside it by the framing story. The framing tale can also be utilized to educate readers on parts of the secondary narrative (s) that would otherwise be difficult to comprehend. This technique is called "the educational frame."
The framing story is used extensively in literature for education and enjoyment. A famous example is Homer's Iliad, which weaves an underlying story about the war between Greece and Troy through the experiences of several different characters.
The framing story is often used in novels to explain what is happening in the background while the main plot unfolds in the foreground. For example, if a character was going insane from grief, the writer could include a section in their diary or journal to further explain this phenomenon by telling the reader what was going on in the world outside its walls.
Frame stories are also useful when you want to reveal information about the world or society without interfering with the main plot. For example, a frame story could be included at the beginning of a book when discussing various topics such as history, geography, or science without getting too technical or boring for the reader.
Finally, a frame story can be used at the end of a novel as a summary or conclusion to everything that has happened up until then.