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Write an essay of 1200-1500 words in which you discuss the following epic elements (Story elements using "The Ballad of Robbie de Wee" by Deon Meyer: events, character, time, space, focalizer / narrator and theme.

Depression and Stages of Grief in 'The Ballad of Robbie de Wee'

The story of Die Ballade van Robbie de Wee starts with Mr Len being the main character. He had a family of one daughter known as Lisa .He was caring to the family until when he was addicted to drugs. He had huge debts and he decided to borrow money from a bar owner in the town.

My essay will describe how depression and stages of grief have been portrayed by different characters in the story (Meyer, 2017 p.90).Therefore, through the subject of our story we see many characters suffering. Robbie is suffering for suffocating Shasha with a pillow in the hotel. This resulted to scandals to an extend that Robbie did not attend the big concert which was to be hosted in Cape Town .Also, characters like Mr Len suffered and he is now regretting for the big debts he has. In my essay am going to discuss each paragraph by describing what happened and how each character used various skills to illustrate the subject of depression in the entire story.

First is the background information of the story. The story starts by describing what is to be expected by the reader. We see Mr Len regretting for wasting money and being addicted by drugs (Van, 2011 p.270).It is through this lamentation whereby Mr Len comes to a point of describing the key stages of a grief .Mr Len identifies depression as the source of regrets .At the end of the story the same character is so much depressed after losing his friend Robbie. Mr Len says that, “I blame myself for not realising the seriousness of Robbie’s depression, Robbie’s death is loss to country, industry and I have lost a friend and indeed an inspiration son me.” This summarizes the entire story thus revealing to the reader the main subject in the story. The story is in Cape Town a big city in South Africa.

On describing the happenings of the story; this part begins by describing how the main characters met in the story and how their relationship impacted the whole story. Mr Len met with Robbie in a bar. Robbie was invited for a concert in a bar. At this time Robbie was at the age of 19 years old (Van, 2011 p.300).

Mr Len asks; “What’s your name and how old are you.”

Robbie says; “I am 19 years old call me Robbie.”

Background Information

I am Mr Len. Says Mr Len to Robbie.

The conversation went on until they shared adequate information about each other. Robbie said that he hails from Amersfoort and he stays with her mother. Mr Len went on and asked the 19 years old boy on what he likes.


Robbie answers “I like singing.”

Mr Len got inspired from Robbie’s passion in singing (Meyer, 2017 p.190).He called for a meeting with Robbie in his office .Robbie presented his music to Mr Len and afterwards took a step to inspire the boy. Robbie introduced Mr Len to her mother after a while. Mr Len was pleased to meet Robbie’s mother and he was proud to tell Robbie’s mother that she must be lucky for getting this talented child. The mother knew the boy was talented and therefore he used to pray and encourage the boy to work on his talent. Mr Len assured Robbie’s mother that he will nature Robbie up to the end.

Mr Len told Robbie that he was pleased to meet a talented boy like him and therefore he started advising (Minter, 2013 p.298).”If you want to make it in music then you have to realise that there are two roads which a musician should follow; The first road for musician is easy and therefore each musician need to be aware of it .This is on the idols but to me I used but failed. The other road which each musician should be aware is touring to the whole world testing songs, building repertoire and presenting songs in front of audience. This is cruel for a musician but one needs to work on it,” said Mr Len to Robbie.

The important event is seen when Mr Len defines the stages of grief. “I blame myself for not realising the seriousness of Robbie’s depression,” narrates Mr Len. The part discusses the whole story (Van, 2017 p.34).The character which Mr Len is illustrating captures the attention and it introduces the reader on what is to be expected in the whole story. He says that depression disturbs one’s mind. The whole story revolves about depression which has resulted through denial.


Therefore, on describing characters in our story the main characters are Mr Len and Robbie. The outward appearance of the characters in story is displayed through use of different features. Mr Len is inspirational and caring while Robbie is hardworking and pretender. They act different and their weakness is that they play tricks with each other. At the end one can conclude that whole story is a betrayal. Robbie lied to Mr Len. He said that his father died before but he was not open to say that he killed his father and buried himself (Van, 2017 p.314).”Yes I was to shoot him and I buried him, “says Robbie .Mr Len on other hand is secretive and pretender .He says that lawyers wanted to steal money from the concerts but in real sense we see that Mr Len had a lot of debts and the idea to inspire was to get money to settle for his debts from the concerts he arranged with Robbie. At the end we see an inner conflict .After the scandal of Shasha Mr Len went to see Robbie in the hotel. The two started narrating to each other and we see disagreement which resulted to death of Robbie. Also, the burial of Shasha by Mr Len induces chaos .Shasha’s mother has lost one and only daughter .This is an evident of a conflict in our story.

Description of the Happenings in the Story

More important on time is that I have been in position to read the story for an hour. The story not too long and it is open. The story starts in the morning by Mr Len driving to the bar restaurant where he met with Robbie. Mr Len meets with Robbie and the story continues until the death of Robbie. The story ends in the hotel where Mr Len met with Robbie at the roof of the hotel. Mr Len throws Robbie from the roof. It takes a short time for the story to complete an event to the other. From the story of Mr Len with her daughter- Lisa we can see how each is arguing .Lisa enters father’s room and asks his father why the door was closed. Mr Len answers in a flash of seconds ,he don’t want her daughter to ponder or configure what is happening in the room (White, 2016 p.321).Mr Len tried all what he could do to cut off conversation in the scandal of missing girl. It takes two hours for me to read the whole story from the start to the end.


In part of the space we can see that the story is happening in different locations. Characters are in hotels where big concerts are hosted (Sinnreich, 2013 p.312).Robbie after the concerts streams to the hotel while Mr Len goes back to his office. Also we see the Dj in his office with cases being handled in court. The anticipated concert was to take place in Cape Town but the event didn’t happen due to scandals.

More important here is that there is a flashback when Robbie laughs so sarcastically .He says that he is aware of what happened to his father. Says Robbie to Mr Len (laughing),”You don’t know my father you.” Robbie flashes back what happened to his father and he realised that he is the one who killed women from Mbombela and buried them in Kimbo.Robbie flashes back that he killed the missing girl –Shasha.”Yes I suffocated her with a pillow.”

In addition there is section of storyteller in our story. It is through this part whereby we come to realise the type of storyteller we have in our story. The storyteller here is Mr Len and he is motivator and friendly. He starts by narrating what a musician should follow in industry. Mr Len regrets for all what he has passed through - stage of grief .The storyteller describes everything from start to the end. Mr concludes the story by summarizing on the big loss which resulted after the death of Robbie. He says that,” I lost a friend, an inspiration and son to me.”

Character Analysis

In addition, storytelling tends to be advantageous through; at first it helps in learning and it is versatile. It helps in accessing new theories and knowledge .It is the mandate of storytellers to ensure audience gets the apt information from the story. On other hand storytelling will have disadvantages such as; in most cases it is difficult to incorporate all what we have heard from the story teller to our normal activities. Also storytelling the teller can decide to use problematic words which audience will not be able to understand.

The theme in the story is around anger and depression. We know how characters have suffered. Depression is evident when Mr Len when he wanted to throw himself from the top of the roof unfortunately her daughter enters the room (Kruger, 2011 p.300).Mr Len had sold all what he had and started drinking a lot since he had huge debts and had no adequate income to pay debt. Robbie at the end pays for his deeds. Also from the story we realise that hardworking pays and we need to work hard in our talents. Many knew Robbie for the quality of music he performed whenever he was invited in concerts.


In addition, there are other sources which discusses similar events as related to Die Meyers Ballard Robbie de Wee. The first article is (Konigsberg,2011 p.310).This articles advocates for the stages of grief in a society. Grief is divided into; Denial, anger, the choice of circumstances and the whole procedure of negotiation. We have seen anger and denial in our story. This article uses characters who illustrates how denial destroyed a society.

The other article is (Japp, 2018 p.76).This summarises all aspects of depression and how characters work hard to accomplish goals. The articles shows how characters are depressed for their weaknesses in the society. Also, the article explains how characters work throughout, how they have been responsible in their duties and how they are utilising their talents. This is relevant to our story.

Conclusion

In conclusion, my opinion from the story is that it educates us on key virtues that we need to understand as a society (Cordaro, 2012 p.320).We ought to utilise our talents. Robbie was well talented and toiled hard to entertain audience in big concerts. Also, we learn that we have to inspire and be friendly to other people in society. Robbie was friendly and positive and that’s why he attracted many audience in his concerts.

References

Cordaro, M., 2012. Pet loss and disenfranchised grief: Implications for mental health counseling practice. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 34(4), pp.283-294.

Japp, A.H., 2018. Robert Louis Stevenson. BoD–Books on Demand.

Konigsberg, R.D., 2011. The truth about grief: The myth of its five stages and the new science of loss. Simon and Schuster.

Kruger, H., 2011. Postcolonial Polysystems: Perceptions of Norms in the Translation of Children’s Literature in South Africa. The Translator, 17(1), pp.105-136.

Meyer, D., 2017. Die ballade van Robbie de Wee en ander verhale. TYDSKRIF VIR LETTERKUNDE, 54, p.1.

Minter, L., 2013. Translation and South African English Literature: van Niekerk and Heyns' Agaat: An exploration of the creativity of one particular effort at translation of an Afrikaans novel into English. English Today, 29(1), pp.53-57.

Sinnreich, A., 2013. The piracy crusade: How the music industry's war on sharing destroys markets and erodes civil liberties. University of Massachusetts Press.

Van den Berg, C., 2011. Collective trauma in modern Afrikaans fiction. and Danielle Mortimer, p.165.

Van Heerden, N., 2017. Resensies: Die ballade van Robbie de Wee en ander verhale. Tydskrif vir letterkunde, 54(1).

White, M.T., 2016. Musical activity across the lifespan as it contributes to quality of life. International Journal of Community Music, 9(2), pp.157-170.

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[Accessed 12 June 2024].

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My Assignment Help. Analyzing The Epic Elements In "The Ballad Of Robbie De Wee" Essay. [Internet]. My Assignment Help. 2019 [cited 12 June 2024]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/the-story-of-die-ballade-van-robbie-de-wee.

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