4th Person Narration

4th person narration

Wang Hao at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Photograph: Oded Balilty/AP. Courtesy of
Wang Hao at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Photograph: Oded Balilty/AP. Courtesy of The Guardian.

In my new novella I experiment with point of view by developing a question—“Is there a 4th person narration?”—posed by Shanxing Wang in his extraordinary work, Mad Science in Imperial City (Futurepoem, 2005). In physics, the fourth dimension of space is time. In the context of string theory, where our universe is thought to be one of a wilderness of universes comprised of infinite dimensions of space and time that are made up of vibrating membranes of energy, I imagine 4th person narration as a site for considering narrative mode in relation to higher dimensions in physical reality. To intentionally and/or unintentionally engage in a narrative mode within or beyond the fourth dimension might be to read, write, or construct texts outside of time, or in all times, making nonlinearity and simultaneity points of view and spacetime a literary device.

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