IN MEDIAS RES : Technical term for the epic convention of beginning "in the middle of things," rather than at the very start of the story. In the Odyssey, for example, we first learn about Odysseus' journey when he is held captive on Calypso's island, even though, as we find out in Books IX through XII, the greater part of Odysseus' journey actually precedes that moment in the narrative. Of course, films and written tales often begin in the thick of things and fill in the background later; in other words, narrative regularly reworks discursively the simple chronology of its story.






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