Why I don't name characters in storytelling

This may sound overbearing, it may sound philosophical, or maybe just pointless. But just hear me out. Stories are very humane: we can all relate ourselves to stories and memories retold because we have the ability to understand empathy.

There are only a small amount of films that choose to not name their characters, most notably Fight Club. These films are taking stories, and applying them to nameless characters, in other words, characters not subject to one person. When a character immediately receives a name, it's as if the character is personified to the one actor playing him/her. Take Princess Leia, for instance, when you think of Princess Leia, you immediately think of a female heroine played by actress Carrie Fischer. You may also think about Carrie Fischer's face and / or wardrobe, or the relationship with Han Solo. But with Princess Leia, we don't immediately think of the idea of a female heroine taking on an empire symbolic of the Nazi movement. But what if we never learned her name? Would we remember her the same way? More importantly, could you see yourself as a Princess Leia? It's much easier to put yourself in a character's shoes, and / or to relate to a character's conflicts, when the character doesn't have a name.

A nameless character serves as an idea or a group of people. Going back to the references, Princess Leia is one person, only Princess Leia was a member of the Alderaan senate who led a rebellion against the empire. But the main character of Fight Club is not just one person, it's the group of people who mourn for a better life and go to disastrous measures to break the feeling of repetition. Of course, Fight Club has more character development than star wars, but there is a point being made: stories are more influential, and characters are more relatable, when characters remain nameless. It's easier for the viewer / reader to tangibly connect to the characters.

I want to end it off with 'Why should characters represent an idea?'. With that, you have to answer why you telling a story in the first place. Personally, I tell stories to keep memories alive and let others tangibly relate to stories I bring forth. I find that it makes more sense to include nameless characters only, not as a niche, but to bring the audience first. I want the audience to see themselves as the characters, and get inspired by the ideas that characters represent. Everyone is different, and storytelling won't change with or without character names, but the next time you tell a story, think about the audience, and the tangibility of the symbolic meaning your characters have.