The Black Table is Still There Summary (English/Nepali) and Question Answers | Mero Solution

The Black Table is Still There Summary and Question Answers

The Black Table is Still There Summary and Question Answers
Lawrence Otis Graham

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Contents :
1) Summary of The Black Table is Still There in English
2) Summary of The Black Table is Still There in Nepali
3) Question Answers of The Black Table is Still There
3.1) Comprehensive Question Answers of The Black Table is Still There
3.2) Purpose and Audience Question Answers of The Black Table is Still There
3.3) Style and Structure Question Answers of The Black Table is Still There
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Summary of The Black Table is Still There in English
                                      - Lawrence Otis Graham
In "The 'Black Table' Is Still There" by Lawrence Otis Graham, relates his experiences as a junior high school student when he pays a visit to his school after fourteen years. He found out that "All black table"was still there along with other segregated tables in the school cafeteria and this table had such an effect on him. He wants to show the importance of being your own person instead of following the trend. By saying, "No matter who I walked in with - usually a white friend - no matter what mood I was in, there was one thing that was certain: I would not sit at the black table," he asserted that he would never go sit at that "all black table" which all the African American kids gathered around because he was afraid to lose all his white friends or he would be making an anti-white statement by sitting with them. He blamed those black teens for keeping integration in his school as he said, "I believed that the black kids were the reason why other kids didn't mix more. I was ready to believe that their self-segregation was the cause of white bigotry." Then, Lawrence finally realized "how wrong I was" when he stated, "During the same time, there were at least two tables of athletes, an Italian table, a Jewish girls table, a Jewish boys table, (where I usually sat), a table of kids who were into heavy metal music and smoking pot, a table of middle class Irish kids. Weren't these table just as segregationist as the black table?" The African American teens weren't isolating themselves by sitting together, but irritating what others were doing such as tables for athletes, Jewish, and Italians would sit. Segregation was a problem is still seen today not just back then.
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Summary of The Black Table is Still There in Nepali

The Black Table is Still There Summary in Nepali


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Question Answers of The Black Table is Still There

A. Coprehensive :

Q.1. What exactly is the "black table"?

ANSWER : The "black table that Graham refers to is the lunch table in the cafeteria of his high school where only black students sit.

Q.2. In Graham's junior high school, what factors determined where students sat?

ANSWER : The integration between students of the same ethnic background. For example page 350 paragraph 14 states athletes sat with athletes, there was an Italian table, a Jewish girls' table, a Jewish boys' table, a table of kids who were into heavy metal music and smoking pop, and a table of middle-class Irish kids. These determined where they sat in the cafeteria because the students segregated themselves to sit with people they can merely relate too.

Q.3. Why didn't Graham sit at the "black table" when he was in junior high?

ANSWER : Graham thought by sitting at the all black table he would be making an anti-white statement, and he would lose all of his white friends. He didn't want to separate into a group; he believed people who separated themselves from others are the cause of people not communicating well with different religion or racial groups. Graham indicated in his excerpt that segregated tables is a comment on the superficial inroads that integration has made in society.

Q.4. When he was a junior high school student, whom did graham blame for the existence of the exclusively black lunch table? Whom or what does he now see as the cause of the table's existence?

ANSWER : In junior high school Graham blames the "blacks" for the existence of the "black table" he believed they isolated and segregated themselves. In actuality the existence of the table was everyone else who segregated themselves, it was because they were only focused on the "black table" and couldn't seem to see that the other tables around them were just as the "black table" just with their type of people. Graham explains maybe it's the color difference that makes allblack tables or all-black groups attract scrutiny and wrath of so many people.

B. Purpose and Audience :

Q.5. What is Graham's thesis?

ANSWER : Graham's thesis is that even with mandatory integration, groups will still segregate themselves based on culture or common interests.

Q.6. Rather than introducing outside supporting information - such as statistics, interviews with educators, or sociological studies-Graham relies on his own opinions and on anecdotal evidence to support his thesis. Do you think this is enough? Explain your reasoning.

ANSWER : Even though Graham is making a broad statement about self segregation, the essay is largely about his own experience and how he has changed over the years. He is reflecting about how his own attitudes on how he should navigate diverse spaces as a black man have evolved. He notes how he used to feel a sort of resentment toward the black students who engaged in self-segregation and talks about the factors that have prompted him to view things differently. Because the essay is so focused on personal reflection, it does not need additional supporting information.

Q.7. Why does Graham give background information about himself in this essay - for example, in paragraphs 2 and 12? How does this information affect your reaction to him as a person? Your reaction to his essay? Do you think he needs to supply additional information about himself or about his junior high school? If so, what kind of information would be helpful?

ANSWER : The background information that Graham provides gives helpful perspective on a few different levels. Firstly, the information about the types of activities that Graham was involved with during his youth shows that he had a relatively privileged upbringing for an African American boy from his generation. He mentions that he was often "the first and only black person" in many of the activities he was involved with. This helps to explain why he might have felt reluctant to join the "black table" and resentful of those who did. Graham had been integrating himself into non-black spaces for most of his life, so it felt more natural for him to continue doing so in the cafeteria: he had difficulty understanding why the other kids couldn't do the same.

The information in paragraph 12 shows that despite his frequent involvement in "integrated" spaces, he still faced prejudice, even when he didn't notice it. This information shows what a difference perspective makes when analyzing the types of self-segregation Graham discusses

Q.8. Do you think Graham's primary purpose here is to criticize a system he despises, to change his audience's views about segregated lunch tables, or to justify his own behavior? Explain your conclusion.

ANSWER : It seems that Graham is aiming to change his audience's views about segregated lunch tables. He notes that all-black tables receive more scrutiny than other similarly segregated tables and believes that this is unfair. By pointing out how widespread self-segregation is among different groups, as well as how constant the phenomenon has remained over time, he is helping the reader to understand that it is not exclusive to black students.

Q.9. In paragraph 5, Graham tells readers that he usually entered the cafeteria with a white friend; in paragraph 12, he reveals that his best friend was white. Why do you suppose he wants his audience to know these facts?

ANSWER : These facts are important to understanding the context of the story. Knowing that his circle of friends was primarily white makes Graham's choice not to sit at the "black table" make sense; he just wanted to sit with his friends.

Graham's closeness with a white friend circle caused conflict for him, both internally and externally, as alluded to in the article. On the surface, it would seem like wanting to sit with your closest friends would be an obvious, unquestioned choice, but this decision was questioned both by his white and black classmates. His black classmates saw Graham's decision as a form of betrayal, and his white students wondered why he wasn't sitting with the other black students, Graham himself felt like if he did choose to sit at the black table, he would upset his white friends.

C. Style and structure :

Q.10. Throughout his essay, Graham asks rhetorical questions. Identify as many of these questions as you can. Are they necessary? Provocative? Distracting? Explain.

ANSWER : Paragraphs 3 and 7 are comprised entirely of rhetorical questions.

‌Paragraph 10 contains two: "Is that what the all-black table means? Is it a rejection of white people?"

‌Paragraph 13 contains one: "What was I thinking?"

‌Paragraph 14 contains one: "Weren't these tables just as segregationist as the black table?"

Since Graham's essay is quite self-reflective, the rhetorical questions fit well into the essay. He includes them to show the types of questions he was struggling with himself each day in middle school; he still struggles with many of them. These rhetorical questions help the reader to understand what Graham was going through and also prompt the reader to think about these questions themself.

Q.11. In paragraph 16, Graham quotes his long-ago classmates. What do these quotations reveal? Should he have included more of them?

ANSWER : Graham says in paragraph 1 that "the black table" was a "source of fear and dread" for him all throughout junior high school. The quotes he includes in paragraph 16 help to explain where this fear and dread came from. No matter where Graham sat, he felt that he couldn't win; he was criticized either way. If he sat at the black table, he felt like he would be rejecting his white friends, who didn't understand "why all those black kids, sit together". On the other hand, not sitting at the black table resulted in scrutiny from his black classmates and more questions from white students.

These quotations reveal that Graham's anxiety about these segregated tables was not simply internal conflict. His choices were being analyzed by his peers. Including more quotations would have helped to make this clearer, but the essay works just fine as it is.

Q.12. Is Graham's focus on finding causes, describing effects, or both? Explain.

ANSWER : This essay is primarily about finding causes.
Graham first discusses the causes that contributed to his choice not to sit at the black table. These causes included his desire to sit with his white friends, fear of losing his white friends, and his belief that the black students' self-segregation was contributing to bigotry.
Graham also discusses possible causes for the existence of the black table; he talks about how he once attributed it to the black students, but later attributes it to peoples' natural tendency to self-segregate.

Q.13. This essay uses first-person pronouns and contractions. Do you think Graham would have more credibility if he used a less personal and more formal style?

ANSWER : Graham's essay is a very personal one in which he draws upon his own experiences to back up his thesis. His informal writing style is well suited to the content of his essay.
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