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Vengeance taken for kindred upon kindred

 

Disciplines > Storytelling > Plots > Polti's Situations > Vengeance taken for kindred upon kindred

Description | Discussion | See also

 

Previous: Vengeance of a crime

Next: Pursuit

 

Description

Elements

  • Avenging kinsman
  • Guilty kinsman
  • Remembrance of the victim
  • A relative of both

Summary

One family member, the Guilty Kinsman, harms another (the Victim). They are punished for this serious transgression by an Avenging Kinsman.

Variants

A

  1. a father's death avenged upon a mother
  2. a mother avenged upon a father

B

  1. a brother's death avenged upon a son

C

  1. a father's death avenged upon a husband

D

  1. a husband's death avenged upon a father

Discussion

Families very often have extremely strong social trust codes whereby the harming of one family member by another cannot go unnoticed. This can lead to extreme punishment, such as casting out of the offender or even their death.

This is not so unusual even today, where families will, for example, kill a woman who marries or lives with a man who is from outside of cultural boundaries.

It is noticeable that the family metaphor is adopted by such organized groups as the Mafia, and who punish severely any family members who transgress family rules.

As with vengeance of a crime, this act is often filled with great anger, perhaps even more so than for criminal action, although perhaps also tinged with sorrow. In a story, it can be very shocking and perhaps somehow affirming to people where extreme response to family betrayal is not a part of the family code, or even where this is used but has not been needed.

'Vengeance taken for kindred upon kindred' is the 4th of Georges Polti's 36 Dramatic Situations.

See also

The effects of betrayal

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