Towards Narrative-Based Knowledge Representation in Cognitive Systems

Author Nicolas Szilas

Thumbnail PDF


  • Filesize: 342 kB
  • 9 pages

Document Identifiers

Author Details

Nicolas Szilas

Cite AsGet BibTex

Nicolas Szilas. Towards Narrative-Based Knowledge Representation in Cognitive Systems. In 6th Workshop on Computational Models of Narrative (CMN 2015). Open Access Series in Informatics (OASIcs), Volume 45, pp. 133-141, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2015)


The hypothesis according to which narrative is not only a prominent form of human com- munication but also a fundamental way to represent knowledge and to structure the mind has been limitedly but increasingly discussed for the last 40 years. However, in the realm of Artificial Intelligence, it did not lead to an elaborate model of knowledge representation, beyond scripts and cases. In this paper, we attempt to go further by identifying three differentiating features of narratives that may inspire novel forms of knowledge representation: transformation, conflict and unactualized events. In particular, these three features open the way for knowledge representation formalisms that take greater account of the co-existence of intertwined conflicting representations, with various validities and validity domains, beyond a purely factual representation of the world.
  • cognitive science
  • narrative theories
  • knowledge representation


  • Access Statistics
  • Total Accesses (updated on a weekly basis)
    PDF Downloads


  1. Jean-Michel Adam. Le texte Narratif. Nathan, Paris, 1994. Google Scholar
  2. Ruth Aylett, Sandy Louchart, Joao Dias, Ana Paiva, Marco Vala, Sarah Woods, and Lynne Hall. Unscripted narrative for affectively driven characters. IEEE Journal of Graphics and Animation, 26(May/June):42 - 52, 2006. Google Scholar
  3. Heather Barber and Daniel Kudenko. Dynamic generation of dilemma-based interactive narratives. In Proc. Third Conf. on Artificial Intelligence and Interactive Digital Entertainment - AIIDE, pages 2-7, Menlo Park, CA, 2007. AAAI Press. Google Scholar
  4. Roland Barthes. Introduction à l'analyse structurale des récits. Communications, 8(1):1-27, 1966. Google Scholar
  5. Cristina Battaglino, Rossana Damiano, and Vincenzo Lombardo. Moral Values in Narrative Characters: An Experiment in the Generation of Moral Emotions. In David Oyarzun, Federico Peinado, R. Michael Young, Ane Elizalde, and Gonzalo Méndez, editors, ICIDS, pages 212-215, Heidelberg, 2014. Springer. Google Scholar
  6. Jerome Bruner. The narrative construction of reality. Critical Inquiry, 18:1-21, 1991. Google Scholar
  7. Marc Cavazza, Fred Charles, and Steven J. Mead. Characters in Search of an author: AI-based Virtual Storytelling. In Olivier Balet, Gérard Subsol, and Patrice Torguet, editors, International Conference on Virtual Storytelling (ICVS 2001). LNCS 2197, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, pages 145-154. Springer, Heidelberg, September 2001. Google Scholar
  8. Randall Davis, Howard Shrobe, and Peter Szolovits. What is a Knowledge Representation? AI Magazine, 14(1):17-33, 1993. Google Scholar
  9. Syd Field. Screenplay - The Foundations of Screenwriting. Dell Publishing, New York, 1984. Google Scholar
  10. David Herman. Narratology as a cognitive science. Image [&] Narrative, online Magasine of the Visual Narrative, 1(1), 2000. Google Scholar
  11. David Herman. Story Logic: Problems and Possibilities of Narrative. University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, 2002. Google Scholar
  12. David Herman. Storytelling and the Sciences of Mind. MIT press, 2013. Google Scholar
  13. Vincent Jouve. Poétique des valeurs. PUF, coll. "Ecriture", Paris, 2001. Google Scholar
  14. William Labov and Joshua Waletzky. Narrative analysis: Oral versions of personal experience. Essays on Verbal and Visual Arts, pages 12-44, 1967. Google Scholar
  15. Yves Lavandier. La dramaturgie. Le clown et l'enfant, Cergy, France, 1997. Google Scholar
  16. Wendy Lehnert. Plot units and narrative summarization. Cognitive Science, 5(4):293-331, December 1981. Google Scholar
  17. Jean M. Mandler and Nancy S. Johnson. Remembrance of things parsed: Story structure and recall. Cognitive Psychology, 9(1):111-151, 1977. Google Scholar
  18. Michael Mateas and Andrew Stern. Integrating Plot, Character and Natural Language Processing in the Interactive Drama Façade. In Stefan Göbel, Norbert Braun, Ulrike Spierling, Johanna Dechau, and Holger Diener, editors, Proceedings of the Technologies for Interactive Digital Storytelling and Entertainment (TIDSE) Conference, AAAI Fall Symposium Series, pages 139-151, Darmstadt, 2003. Fraunhofer IRB. Google Scholar
  19. Robert McKee. Story: Substance, Structure, Style, and the Principles of Screenwriting. Harper Collins, New York, 1997. Google Scholar
  20. Srini Narayanan. Mind Changes: A simulation semantic model of counterfactuals. mind changes, 2012. URL:
  21. Jean Piaget. L'équilibration des structures cognitives: probème central du développement, volume 33. Presses universitaires de France, 1975. Google Scholar
  22. Julie Porteous, Marc Cavazza, and Fred Charles. Applying planning to interactive storytelling: Narrative control using state constraints. ACM Transactions on Intelligent Systems and Technology, 1(2):10:1-10:21, 2010. Google Scholar
  23. Gerald Prince. The Disnarrated. Style, 22(1):1-8, 1988. Google Scholar
  24. Mark Riedl, C J Saretto, and R Michael Young. Managing Interaction Between Users and Agents in a Multi-agent Storytelling Environment. In Proceedings of the Second International Joint Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems, AAMAS '03, pages 741-748, New York, NY, USA, 2003. ACM. Google Scholar
  25. Marie-laure Ryan. Possible Worlds, Artificial Intelligence, and Narrative Theory. Indiana University Press, Bloomington, IN, 1991. Google Scholar
  26. Marie-Laure Ryan. Introduction. In Marie-Laure Ryan, editor, Narrative Across Media. University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln and London, 2004. Google Scholar
  27. Marie-laure Ryan. Narratology and Cognitive Science: a Problematic Relation. Style, 44(4):469-495, 2010. Google Scholar
  28. Roger C Schank and Robert P Abelson. Scripts, Plans, and Knowledge. In Proceedings of the 4th International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence - Volume 1, IJCAI'75, pages 151-157, San Francisco, CA, USA, 1975. Morgan Kaufmann Publishers Inc. Google Scholar
  29. Roger C Schank and Robert P Abelson. Knowledge and memory: The real story. Knowledge and memory: The real story. Advances in social cognition, 8:1-85, 1995. Google Scholar
  30. Paul Smolensky. Connectionist AI, symbolic AI, and the brain. Artificial Intelligence Review, 1(2):95-109, 1987. Google Scholar
  31. John F Sowa. Conceptual Graphs for a Data Base Interface. IBM Journal of Research and Development, 20(4), 1976. Google Scholar
  32. Nicolas Szilas. A Computational Model of an Intelligent Narrator for Interactive Narratives. Applied Artificial Intelligence, 21(8):753-801, 2007. Google Scholar
  33. Nicolas Szilas, Jason Barles, and Manolya Kavakli. An implementation of real-time 3D interactive drama. Computers in Entertainment, 5(1):5, January 2007. Google Scholar
  34. Nicolas Szilas and Urs Richle. Towards a Computational Model of Dramatic Tension. In Mark A Finlayson, Bernhard Fisseni, Benedikt Löwe, and Jan Christoph Meister, editors, 2013 Workshop on Computational Models of Narrative, volume 32 of OpenAccess Series in Informatics (OASIcs), pages 257-276, Dagstuhl, Germany, 2013. Schloss Dagstuhl-Leibniz-Zentrum fuer Informatik. URL:
  35. Ed Tan. Emotion and the structure of narrative film. Film as an emotion machine. Erlbaum, Mahwah, NJ, 1996. Google Scholar
  36. Perry W Thorndyke. Cognitive structures in comprehension and memory of narrative discourse. Cognitive Psychology, 9(1):77-110, 1977. Google Scholar
  37. Tom Trabasso, Paul Van Den Broek, and So Young Suh. Logical necessity and transitivity of causal relations in stories. Discourse Processes, 12(1):1-25, 1989. Google Scholar
  38. Bernard Victorri. La place de la fonction narrative dans l'émergence du langage et la structure des langues. Théorie, Littérature, Enseignement, 1(17):23-38, 1999. URL:
  39. Stephen G Ware and R Michael Young. CPOCL: A Narrative Planner Supporting Conflict. In Proceedings of the Seventh AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Interactive Digital Entertainment, number Young in AAAI Proceedings, pages 97-102, Palo Alto, CA, 2011. AAAI Press. Google Scholar
  40. Stephen G Ware, R Michael Young, Brent E Harrison, and David L Roberts. Four Quantitative Metrics Describing Narrative Conflict. In David Oyarzun, Federico Peinado, R Michael Young, Ane Elizalde, and Gonzalo Méndez, editors, Fifth International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling (ICIDS). LNCS, 7648, LNCS, pages 18-29, Heidelberg, 2012. Springer. Google Scholar
  41. Peter Weyhrauch. Guiding Interactive Drama. PhD thesis, Carnegie Mellon University, 1997. Google Scholar
Questions / Remarks / Feedback

Feedback for Dagstuhl Publishing

Thanks for your feedback!

Feedback submitted

Could not send message

Please try again later or send an E-mail