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date: 07 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter provides an integrative response to Tilmann Habermas and Christin Köber’s claims regarding the primacy of autobiographical reasoning (AR) in the constitution of identity and Monisha Pasupathi’s claims regarding the importance of alternative paths from narrative to identity. Although initially appearing irreconcilable, closer examination reveals them as complementary moments of a more comprehensive multidimensional process. By Habermas and Köber’s account, AR is invoked mainly in the face of disruptions to identity; Pasupathi’s account suggests that whereas AR processes remain relevant to the constitution of identity, less reflective alternative paths also play an important and formative role. Whether these two pathways to identity are equally formative remains unknown. Because both are likely involved in constituting identity, it would be useful to explore their respective roles in individuals’ lives and how they work together both to provide a sense of personal continuity and to shape and reshape the distinctive beings we are.

Keywords: adolescence, autobiographical reasoning, big stories, continuity, identity, memory, narrative, narrative identity, self, small stories, time

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