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The Toilet

In: English and Literature

Submitted By marthamyklebust
Words 1982
Pages 8
The Toilet
Plot: This story is about a young black girl named Mholo who wants to do something with her life. She wants to get an education and be an artist or another respectable profession, but her mother thought that was a waste of good money. After writing her matric exam she goes to Johannesburg on holiday hoping to find a job. She stays with her sister illegal, because her sister isn't aloud to have visitors. When Mholo goes out or in from her sister's place, she has to do that at specific times. She has got a temporary job in a clothing factory. She had to leave before half past five. Then there was two hours left until the bus left at seven-thirty. She went to a public toilet for "Non-Europeans" and read some magazines while she was waiting for the bus. She sat there every morning waiting for the bus reading and writing poems.

One day Mholo forgot to bring her key with her so she couldn't get inside her sister's door. She decided to wait for her sister and hope the white wouldn't find her, but they did. The Madam found her and she had dogs. The Madam let Mholo go. Mholo's sister was angry with her when she got home. They worked it out and everything was going find again.

The next morning when Mholo was going to the toilet as usual to wait for the bus, she noticed that the toilet-door was repainted, and it was closed for the first time. She accepted that her toilet wasn't her anymore and she sat down on a bench nearby and watched the sun rise and continued writing a story.

“If you don't have a plot, you don't really have a story. There must a problem, conflict or struggle that has to be solved in one way or the other. The conflict can be very concrete, like in "The Toilet": the main character isn't allowed to stay where she is and has to make sure the landlady doesn't see her. In addition she has an inner struggle: she doesn't like the life she is living and tries to find out where her talents lie. So conflicts can be about problems outside or inside the person: other people causing problems or one's own feelings.

Usually the conflict intensifies gradually and reaches a climax at some point in the story before things improve or get worse (depending on whether there will be a happy ending or not). Then the conflict is resolved, the tension winds down and the story ends.

A good plot makes a story interesting, credible and recognisable. Your reader has to be able to identify with the characters in some way and learn something new through them.”

Characters: A story needs interesting and credible characters. It might be a good idea to picture the main character in your head. What does she/he look like? What sort of person is she/he? Fears, hopes, friends, enemies, favourite things, problems?

The short story "The Toilet" by Gcina Mhlope opens like this: "Sometimes I wanted to give up and be a good girl who listened to her elders." It doesn?t take more than one good sentence to present the main character: a girl, doing something she wants to do but perhaps shouldn?t do, not following the advice of others, independent, stubborn, doubting, causing problems. Just one line sets the theme for the whole story and introduces the main character and her problem, which is part of the plot of the story.

Often the best way to tell something about a character is not to tell it directly, but to show it indirectly through action and dialogue. In the same story you also find the following sentence: "I pulled my dress down a little so that it would not get creased when I sat down." This tells the reader indirectly that this is a careful and neat girl who cares about details. Through an action like this, the reader gets a clear picture of this person, much clearer than if the author wrote, "She was a careful and neat person who paid much attention to her clothes. "

Dialogue makes a story livelier, more direct and more real: "Please, Madam, the dogs will bite me," is much better than "I told the lady in a polite way that I was afraid that the dogs would bite me."

Setting: The setting is the where and when of the story. The word "elders" in the opening sentence of "The Toilet" is an indication that this story does not take place in today's Norway. And you only have to read seven lines before the author reveals the setting: "I'd come to Johannesburg for the December holidays after writing my matrix exams, and then stayed on, hoping to find something to do." This tells the reader several things: the story takes place in modern South Africa, in a big city, the main character is a girl of around 18 years old, educated, looking for a job, jobs are hard to find.

Theme: A story always has a theme, a sort of message from the author to the reader. The plot concerns the action and the conflict in the story, but the theme is what the story really is about underneath the surface. When asked what a story is about, many people answer by summarising the plot of the story: '"The Toilet" is about a young South-African girl staying with her sister and hiding from her sister's employer. She spends a lot of time waiting in a toilet before and after work and slowly she finds out that writing stories and poems is what she wants to do.'

But this does not tell us what the theme of the story is. Different readers might have different opinions of what the story really is about, but most people would probably agree that "The Toilet" is a story about growing up, taking responsibility for your own life and finding your identity.

Norsk:
Plot: Denne historien handler om en ung svart jente som heter Mholo som ønsker å gjøre noe med livet sitt. Hun ønsker å få en utdannelse og være en artist eller en annen respektabelt yrke, men hennes mor trodde det var en sløsing med gode penger. Etter å ha skrevet sin artium eksamen hun går til Johannesburg på ferie i håp om å finne en jobb. Hun holder seg med hennes søster ulovlig, fordi hennes søster er ikke høyt for å ha besøkende. Når Mholo går ut eller inn fra søsterens plass, må hun gjøre det på bestemte tider. Hun har fått en midlertidig jobb i en konfeksjonsfabrikk. Hun måtte forlate før halv fem. Så var det to timer igjen før bussen igjen på halv åtte. Hun gikk til et offentlig toalett for "ikke-europeere" og lese noen blader mens hun ventet på bussen. Hun satt der hver morgen venter på bussen lesing og skrive dikt.

En dag Mholo glemte å bringe henne nøkkel med henne slik at hun ikke kunne komme på innsiden søsterens dør. Hun bestemte seg for å vente på sin søster og håper den hvite ville ikke finne henne, men de gjorde. Madam fant henne og hun hadde hunder. Madam la Mholo gå. Mholo søster var sint på henne da hun kom hjem. De jobbet det ut og alt skulle finne igjen.

Neste morgen da Mholo skulle på toalettet som vanlig for å vente på bussen, la hun merke til at toalettet-dør ble malt, og det var stengt for første gang. Hun akseptert at hennes toalett var ikke henne lenger, og hun satte seg på en benk i nærheten, og så solen stige og fortsatte å skrive en historie.

"Hvis du ikke har en tomt, trenger du ikke egentlig har en historie. Det må et problem, konflikt eller kamp som må løses på en eller annen måte. Konflikten kan være veldig konkret, som i "The Toilet": hovedpersonen ikke er lov til å bo der hun er, og må sørge for at utleier ikke se henne. I tillegg har hun en indre kamp: hun ikke liker det livet hun lever og prøver å finne ut hvor hennes talenter ligge. Så konflikter kan være om problemer utenfor eller inne i personen: andre mennesker forårsaker problemer eller ens egne følelser.”

Vanligvis konflikten intensiveres gradvis og når et klimaks på et tidspunkt i historien før ting blir bedre eller verre (avhengig av om det blir en lykkelig slutt eller ikke). Da konflikten er løst, slynger spenningen ned og historien ender.

En god tomten gjør en historie interessant, troverdig og gjenkjennelig. Leseren må være i stand til å identifisere seg med karakterene på noen måte og lære noe nytt gjennom dem. "

Tegn: En historie trenger interessante og troverdige karakterer. Det kan være en god idé å se for hovedpersonen i hodet ditt. Hva gjør hun / han ser ut? Hva slags person er hun / han? Frykt, håp, venner, fiender, favoritt ting, problemer?

Novellen "The Toilet" av Gcina Mhlope åpner slik: "Noen ganger ønsket jeg å gi opp og være en god jente som lyttet til hennes eldste." Det spiller ingen ta mer enn én god setning å presentere hovedpersonen:? En jente, gjør noe hun ønsker å gjøre, men kanskje burde ikke gjøre, ikke etter råd fra andre, uavhengige, sta, tvile, forårsaker problemer. Bare én linje setter tema for hele historien og introduserer hovedpersonen og hennes problem, som er en del av handlingen i historien.

Ofte den beste måten å fortelle noe om en karakter er ikke å fortelle det direkte, men å vise det indirekte gjennom handling og dialog. I den samme historien også du finne følgende setning: ". Jeg trakk min kjole ned litt, slik at det ikke ville bli krøllete når jeg satte meg ned" Dette forteller leseren indirekte at dette er en forsiktig og ryddig jente som bryr seg om detaljer. Gjennom en handling som dette, får leseren et klart bilde av denne personen, mye klarere enn om forfatteren skrev: "Hun var en forsiktig og ryddig person som har betalt mye oppmerksomhet til hennes klær."

Dialog gjør en historie livligere, mer direkte og mer reelt: «Vær så snill, Madam, vil hundene bite meg," er mye bedre enn "Jeg fortalte damen på en høflig måte at jeg var redd for at hundene skulle bite meg."

Innstilling: Innstillingen er den der og da av historien. Ordet "eldste" i åpningen setning av "The Toilet" er en indikasjon på at denne historien ikke finner sted i dagens Norge. Og du trenger bare å lese syv linjer før forfatteren avslører innstillingen: ". Jeg ville komme til Johannesburg for helligdager desember etter å skrive mine matrise eksamener, og deretter bodde på, i håp om å finne noe å gjøre" Dette forteller leseren flere ting: historien foregår i moderne Sør-Afrika, i en stor by, er hovedpersonen en jente på rundt 18 år gammel, utdannet, på jakt etter en jobb, jobber er vanskelig å finne.

Tema: En historie har alltid et tema, en slags melding fra forfatteren til leseren. Plottet dreier handlingen og konflikten i historien, men temaet er hva historien egentlig dreier seg om under overflaten. På spørsmål om hva en historie handler om, mange folk svarer med å oppsummere handlingen i historien: "" The Toilet "handler om en ung sørafrikansk jente som bor sammen med sin søster og gjemmer seg fra søsterens arbeidsgiver. Hun tilbringer mye tid på å vente på et toalett før og etter jobb og sakte hun finner ut at det å skrive historier og dikt er hva hun ønsker å gjøre. "Men dette betyr ikke fortelle oss hva temaet i historien er. Ulike lesere kan ha ulike oppfatninger av hva historien egentlig dreier seg om, men de fleste vil trolig være enige om at "The Toilet" er en historie om å vokse opp, ta ansvar for ditt eget liv og finne din identitet.

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