MILLI FOLKLOR, no.93, pp.207-219, 2012 (AHCI)
Personal experience narratives are the basic expressive forms and processes in which human beings understand and make sense of themselves and the world they live in. Despite their extensive functionality and importance, these narratives have become the focus of academic studies since the 1970s. In this process, thematic, semantic, structural,and performative qualities of personal experience narratives have been defined in the frame of characteristics of traditional narrative genres. Early in the process of identification, personal narratives have been defined as a separate genre due to their distinctive content and structure. Text-centered definitions based on the criterion of the fixed content and structure not only excluding most of the narratives but also regarding the context as a frame causing situational changes in the fixed content and structure. Whereas, experiences and memories that determine the content and structure of narratives have been constructued in the-frame of the contextual variables before being narrated. Therefore, personal narrative is. the meaning and the function itself emerging in the situational and socio-cultural context and is the mechanism of emergence of the specific content, structure and performance compatible with the meaning and function determined by the context. By evaluating the prevailing approaches to defining personal experience narratives, this paper examines the basic and controversial concepts of personal narratives. The objective of this paper is to provide an interpretive and contextual frame to define and analyze the personal experience narratives as strategic reconstructing-actions,events and processes which are determined by situational and socio-cultural contexts.