Fiction: Types of Narrators

Omniscient or all-knowing narrator
A narrator who has the ability to move freely through the consciousness of any character. The omniscient narrator also has complete knowledge of all of the external events in a story.

Participant or first person narrator
A narrator who is a participant in the action. Such a narrator refers to himself or herself as “I” and may be a major or minor character in the story.

A first person narrator who is relatively detached from or plays only a minor role in the events described.

Nonparticipant or third person narrator
A narrator who does not appear in the story as a character but is usually capable of revealing the thoughts and motives of one or more characters.

Innocent or naïve narrator
A character who fails to understand all the implications of the story he or she tells. The innocent narrator-often a child or childlike adult-is frequently used by an author to generate irony, sympathy, or pity by creating a gap between what the narrator perceives and what the reader knows.

Unreliable narrator
A narrator who-intentionally or unintentionally-relates events in a subjective or distorted manner. The author usually provides some indication early on in such stories that the narrator is not to be completely trusted.

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Fiction: Types of Narrators. (2019, Feb 20). Retrieved from

Fiction: Types of Narrators
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