Publication Date


Type of Culminating Activity


Degree Title

Master of Arts in Communication



Major Advisor

Dr. erin mcclellan


This study investigates the power of stories told within Caribbean dancehall music and culture that present “good reasons” that are adopted by members of that culture. In addition, these “good reasons” were further investigated through participants’ communicative cultural performances at two dancehall related events. I adopted a qualitative interpretive approach to data collection and employed Walter Fisher’s narrative paradigm theory to engage in narrative analysis of collected Caribbean dancehall stories. My findings show that dancehall stories reveal powerful ideological frames that “naturalize” ways of being within Caribbean dancehall culture. Moreover, various relationships between “good reasons” presented in lyrical stories and the adoption of these “good reasons” by participants in their own stories emerged as well. Additionally, a relationship between the “good reasons” presented in participant stories and the communicative cultural performances of these stories also supported Fisher’s test of “good reasons” as useful in looking to narrative probability and narrative fidelity as criteria for analysis. Such an analysis allows for “insiders” of Caribbean dancehall culture to critically assess their cultural realities while enlightening “outsiders” on the power of stories through ideological frames and Fisher’s “good reasons” that is argued to be applicable in understanding the (re)formation process of cultures through stories.