Interpretation of Plot Outline for “Robbery”


This piece is a plot outline.  I took a creative writing class my sophomore year and one thing we had to do was come up with a story plot every week, and so I thought this would be interesting.  It gives a complete story but is more gaps than narration, and so is actually just a structure for a story from which many different stories can be told.  My goal is to actually write this story eventually.  What I am reflecting on here is the short story we read for section this week called “The Beggar’s Strike.”  In that story Islam interfaces with a culture and society recently emerged from the colonialism.  The main events around which the different characters’ stories are interwoven is a crackdown on beggars in the capital city and then their ensuing strike.  This is a story about the weak being oppressed by the powerful, and also, especially in the case of Mour Ndiaye, how easy it is to fall into sacrificing moral principles to the pursuit of wealth and  power.  I was also intrigued by the brief descriptions given of the interactions between the native Senegalese and their colonial rulers when the nation was still under colonial rule.  There was such a tremendous tension it seemed in every encounter that was described.  These were the thoughts I was having towards this particular short story we read, and they came together to form this plot outline with the experiences I had the weekend before.  During that weekend I had gone snowboarding in Vermont with some friends and we had stayed in a small motel very similar to the one in the story.  It was interesting for me to think of how this same power dynamic, the strong oppressing the weak, would play out in this new setting.  I also wanted to bring together two groups of different religions and cultures and subject them to a shared oppressor, as opposed to in the Senegalese story where the colonials in their brief appearances are the oppressors and the Senegalese the oppressed.  I wanted to portray the experience of the robbery from both the perspective of Michael and Faisal in such a way that they are very different people from very different backgrounds but brought together in the face of shared oppression.  I want to explore the commonalities in the plight of the oppressed and also the interaction of people from very different cultural perspectives, even through what seems like at first a very ordinary interaction.

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