Music Within Liturature

Tram 83, a novel written by the Congolese writer Fiston Mwanza Mujila and was his debut book. This novel followed the story of two characters, Lucien, a Congolese poet and Requiem, an up and coming enterpenuer as they live life in a nameless African town that is located by the titular location Tram 83, a restaurant/nightclub where most everyone in the town tends to congregate.

One thing that is incredibly stand out within the novel itself is the authors use of a musical influence within the novel, namely jazz.  One way that this musical influence can be seen within Tram 83 is through the constant repetition of the phrase “Do you have the time” which can be found multiple times throughout the course of the novel.

With the frequency and the inevitable familiarity of the phrase by the end of the novel, one could easily see that this one phrase is the novels version of a musical refrain. A refrain in music, usually known as the chorus, is the line or lines of a song that are repeated.

Of course this is not just a pointless reference to music, just to come off as smart. Through the use of the refrain we as the readers are able to get an in deep view to what the characters in the novel experience on a day to day basis within the society. I believe that through the use of the refrain we are able to experience the feeling of monotony that the characters end up experiencing.



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