This is my first question on Writers.se; I'd normally ask such questions on EL&U, but I'm trying to expand my horizons. Let me know if the question is off-topic. Happy to move it to EL&U or Literature if you prefer.
Is there a name for the writing style, common in fiction but not unknown in non-fiction, of interleaving chapters or sections of two or more independent narratives in a single work? Often the stories intersect towards the middle or end of the work; sometimes they stay separate throughout.
For a fiction example, see the short story Seasons of Glass and Iron by Amal El–Mohtar over on Uncanny. Note the first section starts with Tabitha walks... and gets into her story for a few paragraphs, then abruptly ends. A new section starts Amira makes..., and the pattern repeats. In the third section Tabitha and Amira meet, tying the two separate narratives together.
For a non-fiction example, see The Moral Animal by Robert Wright, where even chapters are a treatise on the science of evolutionary psychology, and the odd chapters a high-level biography of Charles Darwin.
I believe this style is employed to create a continuous stream of "cliffhangers" in order to keep the reader engaged. Just as you're really invested in learning what happens to Tabitha and her curse, boom, in comes Amira and her glass hills. Then as soon as you've forgotten all about Tabitha and want to know what happens to Amira, boom again.
Is there a name for this interleaved-narrative style?¹ Anything else you can tell me about it, such as where it originated, how it was popularized, which genres it works best or worst for, and the general view or advice on it for writers from the professional writing community would also be helpful.
¹ I ask because I want to go on a Twitter rant about it :)