The Tideline by Wajdi Mouawad
1.a Using information from the play, write a brief biography of your character
My character of choice is Wilfrid in The Tideline by Wajdi Mouawad. Wilfrid is a young man who was born in Montreal. However, Wilfrid did not have a chance of living with his father due to a fate of events. However, his life changes dramatically when he receives a call and is notified of his father’s demise. The setting of the monologue is actually based on Wilfrid’s quest to understand the many questions revolving around life and death. Wilfrid takes on a long and torturous journey of seeking to bury his father in a dignified manner. Having lived in a war prone zone, Wilfrid had adopted the immoral nature of his neighborhood, however, the demise of his father changes his line of thoughts and wants to give his father a decent burial, no matter what it takes. He takes a journey to his parental home, Lebanon, where he seeks to bury his father in order to reconcile with the ancestors.
2.a How do your character’s actions and objectives change throughout this monologue?
Wilfrid’s character, actions, and objectives change throughout the monologue as he experiences different circumstances in his life. In the beginning, Wilfrid lives a normal life that mirrors the dirty society in Montreal. Actually, he received a phone call when he was having an immoral sexual encounter. However, the news of his father’s death changes his actions and objectives in life. He takes on a noble course of establishing the relationship that preexisted in his family when his parents were alive. In the monologue, he seeks to know exact answers to some of the difficult life questions. The most notable change can be realized when Wilfrid seeks to know what he is supposed to do with his life in return to giving his father a decent burial. He wants a clear and concise answer to these questions.
3.b Write a brief (max.1page) synopsis for the play your monologue is from.
The Tideline by Wajdi Mouawad is a play that centered in the main character Wilfrid. The play is notably divided in to two parts. The first part concentrates on Wilfrid’s free lifestyle before receiving the news about his father’s death. The second part, which is the most interesting, and from which the monologue is obtained, focusses on Wilfrid’s journey to his homeland with his father’s corpse as he seeks to give him a decent burial. The pivotal point of the play occurs when Wilfrid receives a phone call notifying him of his father’s death. Most notable conflicting point on the play is seen when his dead father’s corpse sometimes speaks to him. Arguably, this represents a conflict between life and death. The fact that the corpse talks to Wilfrid and tells him that he is not an idiot despite his death, this may imply that actions of the living are at times pegged on the dead. This can also be seen as foreshadowing since; Wilfrid eventually buries his father together with other friends as part of reconciling with the dead.
Paraphrase of the Monologue
Wilfrid: There is overwhelming need to be concisely clear here. Whereas I have never believed in anything on earth or in heaven, it is hard to imagine that I actually do not believe. If there is someone anywhere listening, I would appreciate only one favor, a special place to rest my father. In fact, I will not bury my father just anywhere. I will do whatever it takes to bury him decently at home. However, I will need something in return, an answer to this big question, what am I supposed to be doing with my life? I want a clear concise answer, and I think that is easy and clear to understand (Mouawad 28).
Mouawad, Wajdi. The Tideline. Canada: Playwrights Canada Press. 1999, Print.
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