Tricksters in Literature and Life

Essay by veryfatJunior High, 9th gradeA, October 2004

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People play tricks on other hapless victims all the time. Sometimes, the trickster and the victim don't even know it. It's just human nature. At least one point in almost everybody's lives, they have been the trickster or the victim of a trickster. Despite the massive amount of tricksters, they can be squished down into four categories: the troublemaker tricksters, guilty tricksters, "I must get revenge" tricksters, and the "Brer Rabbit" tricksters.

The trouble maker tricksters are just that: troublemakers. This group enjoys pulling pranks and jokes just for the entertainment it produces. These tricksters usually use old-fashioned and well-known schemes, such as the water pail on the door, tack on chair, and the box of jumping snakes, as their source of fun. However, some extreme troublemaker tricksters will invent new and creative pranks to pull. While it is made up of predominantly boys, a few girls will also turn out to be troublemaker tricksters.

Bruno and Boots from the "McDonald Hall" series are excellent examples. These two friends love pranks; there's almost never a time when they are not thinking up new tricks. In one book, Bruno dabbed some red paint on his sleeping, spermatophobic roommate. When his roommate woke up, Bruno screamed that he had a horrible disease and he could die anytime soon. He even produced a fake newspaper article about it. As a result, a look of horror crept on his roommate's face. After the roommate found out the disease was a sham, Bruno had a big grin on his face.

As soon as the troublemaker trickster is caught, he or she sometimes transforms into a guilty trickster. This type of trickster will seek a way out of punishment. While most will just beg for forgiveness, some will use their wily skills to escape.