The Incompetent Narrator

My life has changed. Five years ago I was not who I am now. Professionally and personally a new me has risen out of the ashes. This is not a ‘born again’ revelation or some other kooky strangeness occurring here. My life has changed simply as an effect of trauma.

As a result my memory is more flawed than most. Past events feel like an echo rather than a memory. Did this happen to me? Is this a half-memory I’ve purloined from a film I once watched? I pull facts out of my brain that I’m not even sure are real; and if they are, I’m not entirely sure how they got there. The more I dig into my mind to confirm facts, the more it resists. I’ve learned it’s better to look away than to find myself reduced to tears with confusion.

Dennett said “We try to make all of our material cohere into a single good story. And that story is our autobiography.” It is true that there is one character inhabiting my being. This is my Self. But, my internal narrator only ever chooses to tell me a half-tale about that Self and then forgets to finish the story.

My work Self [other] attempts to visualise all these flaws. In a way I’m trying to retrain my narrator into telling a better, more coherent, story.


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