Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Monomodal Monologue

I was worried about my rewrite on the monologue - worried I was getting too close to it, but, I'd tried to carry out a cut and shut. My fear was that there is still some fiction-based telling in there, but with the removal of the original opening and ending I thought it had a better developed punch to what's pertinent. I'd added more references to the bullying too, but I wasn't sure that the original flow still held together.

My tutor said the following:

There’s more punch all right. There are still too many knowing references (‘like Macbeth to an actor’; the stuff about decrying Jews and
Muslims) and you still occasionally shove the narrator’s mental state down the audience’s throat instead of thinking about how it can be shown through words and actions (stop saying ‘humiliation’, for example, and make us feel it). Structural points:

  1. Give us more time at the start. Establish the ordinariness of the
    surroundings. I would take the audience see them before they see the narrator (i.e. you don’t need the first sentence, do you?). I didn’t buy the dictators – a bit obvious, surely, given what’s to come?
  2. I think you need to establish a time and place for the beating at
    the bottom of page 1, otherwise it blends confusingly into the previous incident.
  3. Take time to discover grandpa’s weapons. We need more space when something innocent seems to be happening, and you need to take the opportunities to evoke place whenever they arise – it’s still rather mono-modal, stuck inside this very unusual head.

First and foremost, what is mono-modal? Is it the lack of dynamics?

I have turned, rather randomly to a science paper: Multi-modal Perception

Which provides this encapsulating hypothesis:

To design, optimise and deliver multimedia and virtual-reality products and services it is necessary to match performance to the capabilities of users. When a multimedia system is used, the presence of audio and video stimuli introduces significant cross-modal effects (the sensory streams interact). This paper introduces a number of cross-modal interactions that are relevant to communications systems and discusses the advanced experimental techniques required to provide data for modelling multi-modal perception. The aim of the work is to provide a multi-modal perceptual model that can be used for performance assessment and can be incorporated into coding algorithms.

I won't know how pertinent this is, but at least I can assume mono-modal regards a thinly layered discussion that lacks visual imagery.

Also, Reading Like A Writer Of Electronic Texts, says:

New literacies are multimodal - visual, auditory and they move fast.
Computers are ‘symbol machines’ (Labbo, in press) that allow children to negotiate a complex interplay of multiple sign systems (e.g., video clips, music, sound effects, icons, virtually rendered paint strokes, text in print-based documents), multiple modalities (e.g., linguistic, auditory, visual, artistic), and recursive communicative and cognitive processes (e.g., real time and virtual conversations, cutting/pasting text, manipulating graphics, importing photographs).

Intriguing, no?

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