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date: 14 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Entertainment media can use storytelling—narrative tools like drama, characterization, and conflict—to draw audiences deeper into scientific content. Without careful scrutiny of the content being conveyed, entertainment has the potential to distort scientific knowledge and warp beliefs, but entertainment also has the useful power to capture attention, increase engagement, and promote the understanding and enjoyment of science. Narratives are the underlying structure of entertainment media and represent a unique communication tool for portraying science in ways that intersect with human experience. This chapter provides an overview of the psychological, social, professional, and ethical ways that narrative formats of communication function within entertainment media to communicate science to public audiences. Three short narratives within the chapter embody the risks and potentials of communicating science with storytelling.

Keywords: communication, entertainment, narrative, story, storytelling, attention, scientific content

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