Alex Peek blog

List of posts    Blog archive    About


Sunday, September 16, 2018

What is an anecdote?


Photo source: Wikimedia Commons, Johannes Jansson

Photo license: CC BY 2.5 DK


What is an anecdote? Here is my definition:


An anecdote is a short narrative about an incident


I believe that our entire past experience could be described as a collection of anecdotes. Even the knowledge we obtain from controlled experiments are anecdotal. When we recollect an experiment, we can describe all the procedures and reasons why it was controlled. In this regard, every past experience can take the form of a short story.


I also believe that whenever we use language to refer to the past, we are using anecdotes. For example, if you say, "The ball bounced into the air" you are providing a single sentence story. In this regard, I believe language about the past and anecdotes are the same thing.



License: CC BY-SA 4.0