Throughout The Road to Mecca the reader experiences conflicting emotions towards the character Marcus due to the complexities Of characters and the dynamic events that occur during the play. This essay will explore the impact that the character, Marcus has on the readers emotions as the play unfolds. During the first act, Marcus is not present, but is discussed between Helen and Else. From their conversation the reader develops a preconception that Marquis is manipulative and is attempting to convince Helen to move out of her home.
This idea is reinforced by Helene fear to stand up to him. “It’s just hat Marquis is such a persuasive talker. ” (p. 33 – Helen about Marquis) Upon meeting Marquis in the second act, he comes across as pushy when he explains to Helen that a lot of people have gone through great measures to secure Helen a spot at the old aged home. By causing Helen to feel guilty and informing her that a decision needs to be made quickly, the reader feels that Marcus’ manipulation is a result of possible ulterior motives. “For an old friend he sounds a little overeager to have you on his way. (app – Else about Marquis) The reader also picks up on the Else and Hellene attitudes towards Marcus and upon realizing Helen does not want to move out, the reader is inclined to support Else and Hellene wants as the reader has developed an emotional attachment to them. Marcus’ conservative views and constant attempt to make Helen fit into society’s expectations are symbolic of old and pro-apartheid views. This furthers the readers dislike towards Marquis, as the reader would likely disagree with Marquis’ beliefs. “You turned your back on your church, on your faith and then on us for that? (p 63 -? Marquis’ about Hellene Mecca) Marquis did to want Helen to defy the expectations of woman to go to church, to clean or to be obedient wives and when she did he was unable to accept that. This causes the audience to develop more of an emotional attachment to Helen as in the present it is praised when people do not conform to traditional gender expectations. However, the readers view point shifts as the play reveals new dynamics and complex situations. The reader might have developed a dislike for Marquis due his seemingly manipulative actions in attempting to persuade Helen to move out Of her home.
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However, this perspective shifts as it is revealed that Helen is not as capable of caring for herself as she claimed she was. After Marquis tells Else that Helen made no attempt to save herself when her house set alight, the reader begins to believe that Marquis concern for Helen is genuine, considering recent events. The fact that Else’s visit was due to a concerning, possibly suicidal letter that Helen wrote, emphasizes the fact that Helen might not be emotionally or physically stable in her current state. “My concern is that she gets a chance to live out what is left of her life as safely and happily s humanly possible. (app – Marquis about Helen) Else begins to emphasize with Marquis after she realizes that Helen could put herself at further risk by staying alone at home. Throughout the play Else has had Helene best interest at heart and her loyalty towards Helen is undeniable. The reader is therefore inclined to agree with whatever Else says as she is clearly a true friend of Helene. So when she too sees sense in Marcus’ proposal, the reader realizes that Marcus’ intentions, although they were represented of conservative beliefs, were truly good.
One wonders if his actions were a result of being eased with conformist and conservative beliefs. The readers then feel a sense of sympathy as they regard Marcus’ confirmation views and expectations as a result of an Apartheid upbringing. In a few pages the reader undergoes a complete emotional shift from disliking Marquis to sympathizing and even liking his character. This change is a result of the complexity of Helene lifestyle which was revealed by her inability to completely care for herself and by the change in dynamic between Else and Marquis as it is reveled they both have Helene best interest at heart.
The reader, after undergoing this emotional change is able to look at the situation from all of the characters perspectives. Through this the reader understands that in Maria’s own way, he was trying to be a good friend. He reveals that he cares and wants to help her even if they disagree. “A true friendship should be able to accommodate a difference in opinion. ” (app – Marquis to Helen) The reader becomes fonder Of Marquis once they understand the complexity of his character, their situation and the origin of his concern. Else is portrayed as a foil to Marquis, emphasizing his conservative views opposed to her avian-guard ways.
This dynamic comparison has a profound effect on the reader’s emotions as they experience polar opposite emotions and reactions towards each character. Experiencing two characters different relationships makes us feel sympathetic towards Marquis as we realize his friendship with Helen is built on Marquis’ perception of how he wants Helen to be, while Else appreciates Helen for the person she truly is. The reader feels Marquis’ heartbreak when he realizes Helen can never be the person he wants her to be and he can never be with her due to his conservative and informative beliefs. “It is not easy… Ring to find the first moment in life that must be lived out in the shadow of something that is terribly wrong. ” (app – Marquis to Helen. ) The religious conflict between Marquis and Helen creates a complete dynamic that cause the reader to experience emotions such as anger, understanding, sympathy and heartbreak towards Marquis. In the final pages of act two, if the reader has not already sympathized or developed an attachment to Marquis, they would when Else informs Helen that Marquis loves her. “It’s a very moving story. Twenty years of loving you in the disguise of friendship and professional concern for your soul. (app – Else about Marquis) The reader realizes that Marquis character is a lot more complex than one might originally think. When Marcus tells Helen “there is lighter in her than in all your candles put together” (app) one cannot help but experience Marquis’ heartbreak. The tragic love between Helen and Marquis impacts greatly one the reader’s own emotions due to the interesting dynamics and complexity of their relationship. The Road to Mecca does an excellent job of creating complex characters and interesting dynamics that are so powerful that they impact the readers own emotions, specifically with regards to the character Marquis.
The reader is taken on an emotional journey as the character Marquis resonates With a verity of the readers emotions. Declaration Name: Mayhem Greenwood Student number: 55987354 declare that this assignment is my own original work. Have not copied anyone else’s work or allowed anyone else to copy mine. I am aware that plagiarism is fraud and may be punished with the cancellation of an offending students registration. Signed: Mayhem Greenwood.