26 December 2006


There’s no doubt that we find it difficult to identify ourselves with the reality-and-fantasy sequences that many authors and filmmakers present to us in their narratives. Yet, psychologists say, we all live our lives in similar fashion.

Whenever we are unable to cope with reality, when the events in our lives are too tough to handle, we escape into fantasies, daydreams and wishful thinking. We continuously engage in a process of self-creation and self-discovery, constructing autobiographical narratives. We create fictional worlds in our minds where our problems are sorted out and resolved, providing a much-needed relief.

In these constructed narratives, we transform ourselves into fiction and become extensions of our individual selves, in the same way many authors and filmmakers present their characters in their narratives. We create alternate versions of ourselves, ‘doubles’ you might say, who play different roles in different events… although, in reality, our lives may never change. These ‘doubles’ have the ability to escape from the reality and have the freedom to change anything, living a life of unlimited possibilities.

We stretch the time at our disposal, living out not only one or two events from our lives, but, sometimes, our entire lives. We see our lives being lived differently… fulfilling our desires, resolving issues which are too horrible for us in our real everyday lives. And, should the reality we face everyday not change for us in accordance with our desires, we live and re-live these fantasies for years together.

Our real lives and our fantasy lives are interwoven, though we may never reveal this to the outside world. For, expressing such fictional worlds in print or on celluloid is unthinkable! No wonder, whenever we read about or see a display of such narrative, we feel a discomfort which we are unable to explain.

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