Compare and Contrast of Two Literary Works

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This paper compares and contrasts two different literary works, “Country Lovers” written by Nadine Gordimer and “The Welcome Table” by Alice Walker. Both stories follow the same theme, or hidden message or underlying idea in a story. They are about ethnicity and racism which ultimately results in the death of a person: the infant daughter in “Country Lovers” and the old lady in “The Welcome Table.” Racism has transcended generations, separated families and nations, and left heartache and grief in its wake.
Synopsis of Both Stories
The first story, “Country Lovers” is about Paulus, the spoiled, rich son of a white farmer and Thebedi, the daughter of a poor black worker. The story tells how Paulus and Thebedi grew up together on a South African farm where as children, all played together regardless of their skin color. As the two grew older and began to live the separate lives expected of adolescents of their color, they continued to have secretive affairs, making love, giving presents, and telling stories. Thebedi eventually became pregnant shortly before Paulus left for school, and her wedding was arranged to Njabulo, a poor black farm laborer. Njabulo accepted the baby although it was clearly from a white father. Thebedi kept her baby daughter away from the white people to try to protect Paulus. Finally, after Paulus heard of the baby and saw her, he decided to kill the child to prevent any embarrassment from his parents and white colleagues (Gordimer, 1975).
In Alice Walker’s “The Welcome Table”, the main character is an old black woman of faith. The old woman has obviously lived a long, hard-working life; yet, she is dressed in her Sunday best. Knowing her time is coming to an end, in ill health she staggers in the freezing weather to go to church. Even though her best dress is old, torn, and tattered, her face is weathered and filled with age that shows no emotion, she is determined to walk down the road alone from her home to go to the white



References: Alice Walker. (2012, September 15). Retrieved from Biography.com: http://www.biography.com/people/alice-walker-9521939 Bauer, M. D. (1992). Alice Walker: Another southern writer. Studies In Short Fiction, 29(2), 143. Clugston, R. W. (2010). Journey Into Literature. Gordimer, N. (1975). Country Lovers. Gordimer, N. (2012, September 1). Town and Country Lovers. Retrieved from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/article-1G2-2696100027/town-and-country-lovers.html Nadine Gordimer - Biography. (2012, September 15). Retrieved from NobelPrize.org: http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1991/gordimer-bio.html Walker, A. (2003). THE WELCOME TABLE. Literary Cavalcade, 55(5), 3

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