This paper compares two theoretical frameworks for understanding the relationship between individual narratives of experience and the wider social and cultural narrative context. The two frameworks are the narrative landscape model of Connelly and Clandinin and a tool-based framework
derived from a neo-Vygotskyan perspective that draws particularly on the work of Wertsch. The paper explores the effects that the fundamental structuring metaphors of landscape and tool have on how we might think about the relationship between individual narratives and social and cultural
narrative context. The paper argues that we need to be critically reflective about the metaphors we use and not allow them to become naturalized. It also argues that this is best achieved by exploring alternative metaphors.