Narrativium

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Jack Cohen and Ian Stewart joined forces with Terry Pratchett

It was Terry Pratchett who coined the term ‘narrativium’ as the element upon which we humans run.

It was New Optimist Jack Cohen who describes us humans as pan narrans, the storytelling rather than homo sapiens. (And Jack and mathematician Ian Stewart joined forces with Terry Pratchett to write the Science of Discworld series, and thereby became Hon Wizards of the Unseen University.)

The facts and stats of science have little easy appeal for many people. Yet, as Terry so memorably illustrates, all humans like a good story.

That’s why we set up the Narrativium Projects in early 2014


The Narrativium Projects


Extract from Kate Cooper’s opening blog post introducing The Narrativium Project’s musical about Food Crime, The Hand That Feeds…

We humans have a spectacular trick. Terry Pratchett points out in his 2002 popular science book/novel “The Science of Discworld II: The Globe” …in order for humans to understand anything it must be encapsulated in a story. In the fictional part of the book this is symbolised by the fictional element ‘narrativium’ (The most common element on the disc in Terry Pratchett’s Disc World universe). The science section suggests that, rather than Homo sapiens (Wise Man), we might be better described as Pan narrans (Storytelling Ape).