Comparing bananas to tomatoes | story-work apps and storytelling

By Limor Shiponi

RSS has brought my way the two last posts by Katharine from ‘A storied career’ – always worth tracking. I’m referring to ‘Applied storytelling vs. performance/traditional storytelling‘ and to ‘Towards a taxonomy of applied-storytelling schools of thought‘.

After reading both posts I’ll have to agree with Sean Buvala and add my two cents:

From an artist’s point of view my disapproval with the content of Katharine’s posts is not with the “applied” but with the “storytelling” definition. Most of the applications listed on both posts are about story, not storytelling as are all the story-delivering channels. You are welcome to read about the way professionals from different disciplines incorporate story-work in some form but those applications are not about or vs. storytelling (as said before – most of them).

Storytelling has it’s own list of applications which are about the context of our work and the existence state/required skills that come with the situations they create.

I’m still looking for an answer to a very simple question – why insist on calling story applied work – storytelling? if at all, one could argue that storytelling is one of the many story applications that exists. I’m not sure I would agree with that either but it’s a more honest suggestion from a storyteller’s point of view.

Placing applied storytelling vs. performance/traditional storytelling and then spreading a lavishing card-deck of scientifically classified applications is an impressive move just like printing a brochure for an event that has on the same time-slot an actor doing “The fly” by Tschechow and a storyteller doing “traditional tales”…

Well, that leaves me with the inner demand to tell you about storytelling applications and the existence state/required skills that come with the situations they create, doesn’t it? will do soon.

6 thoughts on “Comparing bananas to tomatoes | story-work apps and storytelling”

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  2. Thanks for this thoughtful post, Limor. Perhaps at some point practitioners of applied story work will distinguish their work from “storytelling.” I certainly understand the perspective of storytelling purists like you and Sean.

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