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Mejdoub by Paul Bowles

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  1. A religious short story?
  2. The creation of a new, fictional, short story, character

The short story, Mejdoub, written by Paul Bowles, an American writer who lived in Tanger for half a century, narrates the story of a poor man who decides to make money, playing the role of a mejdoub. A mejdoub is a religious mystic who utters prophecies. The protagonist who seems to have much luck, becomes rich imitating an old mejdoub for several years but is eventually arrested and locked up as a madman. This story may therefore be analyzed as a moral religious short story that denounces religious usurpers, who are punished by the divine will but it also deals with human freedom. It may also be analyzed as a piece of fiction that creates a new character that eventually exceeds reality.

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