Comparative Paper

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  • Topic: White people, Black people, Race
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Comparative paper

Ashley Dornbusch
Eng 125
9/10/2012

The welcome table and country lovers share the same theme but are adversely different in many ways, yet in some they are a lot alike. In this paper I will compare and contrast The Welcome table by Alice Walker and Country lovers by Nadine Gordimer. I will address how they both are written in form, context, and style. I will explain different literary elements the author’s used to give detail about the stories.

The two stories being compared and contrasted are similar in that they both are written around the same theme, race, and ethnicity. They are also both written in third person. The two writers Alice Walker and Nadine Gordimer were both expressing stories of racial inequality. They also show the reader that when the story was written it was not allowed to have a white person and black person in a relationship. They also express how unequal it was for a white person compared to a black person. In “The welcome table” a black woman came up to the steps of a white church and the preacher of that church stopped her at the lobby and said “Auntie, you know this is not your church” (Clangston 2010).” In the story country lovers Thebedi and Paulus, the main characters, had grown up together and ended up having a sexual relationship. When Paulus finds out Thebedi had a light skinned child he kills it because a white and black relationship is not allowed. He is also ashamed about being in a relationship with her and denies all accusations against him.

In country lovers the story is about a white male, Paulus Eysendyck, who is the son of a farmer, and Thebedi one of the black female workers on the farm. The story starts off with them as children playing together along with all the other children, but Paulus and Thebedi were closer than the others. As they grow up Paulus goes to school and brings Thebedi gifts and tells her stories about school. They eventually end up having a sexual relationship and Thebedi ends up pregnant. Paulus is away at school when she finds this information out along with finding out she is getting married to Njabulo a black male who also works for the farmer. Thebedi gets married and has the baby. Njabulo knows that the child is not his because it has straight hair and light colored skin, but still raises him as his own. Paulus returns from school and overhears the in house servants talking about the light skinned child. He then goes out to the living quarters to see it. He finds Thebedi and Njabulo’s house and secretly kills the child.

The author uses imagery, character, and third person point of view (bookrags.com) throughout this story. The author paints a very good picture for the reader by using very graphic details describing everything. She uses character to describe the people in the story. Nadine Gordimer writes the story in third person objective. She only speaks as an outsider looking down on the story unfolding. She does not tell the reader what the characters feel throughout the story. Using imagery she makes a visual image of the characters and setting. “down there hidden by the mesh of old, ant-eaten trees held in place by vigorous ones, wild asparagus bushing up between the trunks, and here and there prickly-pear cactus sinken-skinned and bristly, like an old man’s face, keeping alive sapless until the next rainy season”. (Country lovers Nadine Gordimer). This is one example of what the reader experiences throughout the story. In The welcome table the main theme is also about racial inequality. This story starts out with an old black lady standing on the stairs of a church. She walks into the church and the preacher says “Auntie, you know this is not your church?” as if one could choose the wrong one. (Clangston 2010). She just walks past him and sits down in the very back row of the church. All the white people sitting inside near the front starred at her in disbelief. The usher came up to her and...
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