Narrative Similarity as Common Summary

Authors Elektra Kypridemou, Loizos Michael

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Elektra Kypridemou
Loizos Michael

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Elektra Kypridemou and Loizos Michael. Narrative Similarity as Common Summary. In 2013 Workshop on Computational Models of Narrative. Open Access Series in Informatics (OASIcs), Volume 32, pp. 129-146, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2013)


The ability to identify similarities between narratives has been argued to be central in human interactions. Previous work that sought to formalize this task has hypothesized that narrative similarity can be equated to the existence of a common summary between the narratives involved. We offer tangible psychological evidence in support of this hypothesis. Human participants in our empirical study were presented with triples of stories, and were asked to rate: (i) the degree of similarity between story A and story B; (ii) the appropriateness of story C as a summary of story A; (iii) the appropriateness of story C as a summary of story B. The story triples were selected systematically to span the space of their possible interrelations. Empirical evidence gathered from this study overwhelmingly supports the position that the higher the latter two ratings are, the higher the first rating also is. Thus, while this work does not purport to formally define either of the two tasks involved, it does argue that one can be meaningfully reduced to the other.
  • narratives
  • similarity
  • common summary
  • empirical study
  • questionnaire


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