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Roger Mais Brother Man to a large extent fits into Aristotles theory of Tragedy as outlined in the Poetics However the first thing that may be questioned when trying to fit Brother Man into Aristotles description is the fact that Aristotle suggests that the medium of tragedy is drama not narrative as tragedy shows rather than tells How then can one apply this description to the novel Brother Man Roger Mais cleverly structured his novel similar to a dramatic piece Brother Man is divided into five chapters - reminiscent of the five acts of a play Additionally the short episodes within each chapter also suggest the scenes of a play The novel may be further likened to a Classical Drama as it utilizes a Chorus Initially the chorus of people in the lane may seem an interlude as opposed to a character itself as Aristotle specifies - fully integrated and contributing to the unity of the plot However upon closer inspection the chorus does more than merely introduce each chapter The chorus of people in the lane interprets action voices responses of the group representing the people of the lane establishes the required mood and prepares the audiencereader for what actually happens In this aspect Mais chorus of people in the lane does borrow from Aristotles theory of a Tragedy Yet the issue still must be addressed that Brother Man possesses even though it may describe action narrative Mais may thus be transforming Aristotles notion of a tragedy by creating a stage in the minds of his readers as opposed to the action taking place in an actual theatre In doing this Mais grants his reader the role of both director and audience The readers theatre or the mind of the reader is now presented with a piece that indeed borrows many aspects from Aristotle but transforms them to present a piece that is spiced with Caribbean influence but possessing potentially universal concerns
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