The Welcome Table

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The Welcome Table
“The Welcome Table” written by Alice Walker is a story about faith and religion. This was a bittersweet story about an elderly woman finding Jesus. The theme of the story is having faith in your religion. Some of the literary elements of this short story that contribute to the theme include plot, point of view, conflict, and setting. This story provides an excellent example of theme because it provokes emotion and insight.

The plot of this story begins when an elderly woman went into a church where only white people were allowed. Some of the white women provoked their husbands to throw the old woman out of the church. “It was the ladies who finally did what to them had to be done. Daring their burly indecisive husbands to throw the old colored woman out they made their point” (Walker, 1970). After being thrown out of the church the old woman sat bewildered, wondering why they had interrupted her singing in her head praising Jesus. She began singing again, this time a sad song when she noticed coming down the highway the most glorious sight, Jesus. Jesus said nothing more to the old woman then follow me, she followed Jesus down the highway past her house. “She did not know where they were going; someplace wonderful, she suspected” (Walker, 1970). The old woman died on the highway that night, even through the unfortunate events that occurred in the church, she found Jesus.

The major conflict of this story is between the old woman and society. The conflict, or struggle within the story can be an internal or external conflict; without conflict there is no story (Conrey, 2010). “The young usher, never having turned anyone out of his church before, but not even considering this job as that (after all , she had no right to be there, certainly), went up to her and whispered that she should leave” (Walker, 1970). This example demonstrates conflict because the old woman had gone into the church to praise Jesus; because of her color she was asked to...
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