Transmedia Storytelling: Contemporary Forms of Telling Stories across Media
Storytelling is probably as old as mankind. From oral to written forms of storytelling, from the first printed book to television, from emails to online communities – storytelling has always been a social activity and therefore part of human communication. Equally, it is a truism that storytelling has changed significantly, even more so with the rise of the New Media and their progressive technologies. In contemporary media culture, each medium, be it the radio, television, or the Internet, has its own specificities and therefore its own ways of telling stories.This lecture's focus is on transmedia storytelling, a contemporary phenomenon that has emerged within the last couple of years. First of all, this term and phenomenon will be approached in an overview of the definitions already offered by interdisciplinary scholars. Secondly, students will be provided with a more detailed theoretical background to the topic, combined with illustrative examples. Thirdly, the role of contemporary fiction in the context of transmedia storytelling will be considered, thereby showing that it is not only the so-called New Media that form part of this phenomenon but also old media, such as the novel. With regard to some selected novels the lecture will demonstrate that literature not only forms part of transmedia storytelling but reflects on it on a meta-level.
Claudia Weber studied English, Politics, and Sports (Lehramt an Gymnasien) as well as Sport Sciences, Sociology, and Psychology (MA) at Justus Liebig University Giessen. In October 2010 she started her PhD project on "Fictions of Television" at JLU and the University of Stockholm. Claudia Weber is a member of the International PhD Programme (IPP) "Literary and Cultural Studies," the European PhD Network (PhDnet), and the International Graduate Centre for the Study of Culture (GCSC), where she works as a research assistant.