Burn talks much about narrative. Today even the United States Supreme Court talks -- occasionally -- about the role of narrative in the trial. See Old Chief v. United States, 519 U.S. 172 (1997). But the marriage of the law of evidence and of story-telling remains incomplete. Why? Is it because we do not yet know how to harmonize what Burns calls the "Received View of the Trial" (Chapter 1) with a view that takes into account matters such as the evaluative activities of the jury, the importance of theme at the trial, and so on?
Many of us -- probably most of us, thank goodness -- do wish to preserve the trial's emphasis on the search for the "truth." But it is foolhardy to think that an acceptable search for the truth can be achieved if we ignore, for example, many of the ways the jury thinks about and makes sense of what goes on in the courtroom.