Bringing narrative ideas into the TV world: the politics, the complexities, the possibilities by Kassandra Pedersen

In this Friday Afternoon Video, Kassandra describes the complexities, the politics and the possibilities she has been navigating in her experience of bringing narrative ideas into the TV world. Having been invited over the past few years onto several TV shows to discuss, from a professionalised position, a range of topics that relates to experiences of hardship, the video follows Kassandra’s insights of how walking into the studio is similar to walking into a context that is structured by politics – the politics of representation, the politics associated with the hierarchies of knowledges and the politics of dominant discourses. Inspired by David Denborough’s contributions in the narrative field and following adaptations of the concept of ‘enabling people to speak through us not just to us’, the video shares explorations of how the use of collective narrative practices, and other practices in response to issues of power and privilege, offered new possibilities to utilise this public forum as a vehicle for the sharing of insider knowledges, and the linking of people’s lives through shared stories of hard-won wisdom and skills on the issues being discussed on TV.

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    Margarita Halvatzi-Katsikadelis

    Kassandra hello,

    Thank you for sharing your project! Many times, I have been astonished by the politics of the media inviting experts to speak about different topics like for example the national exams and the stress they provoke to children and their families.

    Through your project, the words’ tips and advice ‘attracted my attention because I always wondered if this could help people in facing hardship.

    Your project Kassandra is really inspiring of how to escape from the reproduction of dominant discourses in media and highlight narrative ideas as acknowledging people’s skills and knowledge in responding to hardship and enabling contribution.

    Your project and the steps that you took to collect the people’s alternative stories around different issues and your intention to share this hard-won knowledge to the audiences of the media had first talked about these narrative ideas with the tv producers all this sounds very challenging to me.
    By listening to your presentation, I can recall my own experience. As a parent counselor, I recently used more consciously these narrative ideas with my clients and I found out that they were delighted by discovering their knowledge and skills in facing issues with their children. I was amazed by their migration of identity.

    They came into the therapy room, considering themselves unable to resolve any problem with their children and blaming themselves for this reason while at the end of our meetings they left with a sense of resourcefulness and creativity.

    Kassandra, thank you for sharing your mindful project with us. It is an opportunity for thinking about how meaningful narrative ideas are for shaping people’s preferred identities and relationships.

    Margarita Halvatzi- Katsikadelis, Narrative Therapist

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