1

narrative

noun nar·ra·tive \ ˈner-ə-tiv , ˈna-rə- \
|Updated on: 9 Aug 2018

Definition of narrative

1 a : something that is narrated : story, account
  • He is writing a detailed narrative of his life on the island.
b : a way of presenting or understanding a situation or series of events that reflects and promotes a particular point of view or set of values
  • The rise of the Tea Party and the weakness of the Obama economy have fueled a Republican narrative about Big Government as a threat to liberty …
  • —Michael Grunwald
  • The media narrative around Kelly's appointment had two central ideas … : He would calm and professionalize the White House, and he would provide a more measured leadership style than his boss.
  • —Perry Bacon Jr.
2 : the art or practice of narration
  • … depended not on narrative but on intensity derived from the verity to make the book jump.
  • —Stanley Kauffmann
3 : the representation in art of an event or story; also : an example of such a representation
  • the narrative of St. Joan of Arc

narratively

adverb

Examples of narrative in a Sentence

  1. He is writing a detailed narrative of his life on the island.

  2. People have questioned the accuracy of his narrative.

Recent Examples of narrative from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'narrative.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of narrative

1567

in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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2

narrative

adjective

Definition of narrative

1 : having the form of a story or representing a story
  • a narrative poem
  • narrative paintings
2 : of or relating to the process of telling a story
  • the author's narrative style
  • the novel's narrative structure

Recent Examples of narrative from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'narrative.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of narrative

15th century

in the meaning defined at sense 1

See Words from the same year
NEW! Time Traveler

NARRATIVE Defined for Kids

1

narrative

noun nar·ra·tive \ ˈner-ə-tiv \

Definition of narrative for Students

: something (as a story) that is told in full detail

2

narrative

adjective

Definition of narrative for Students

: having the form of a story
  • a narrative poem


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