36 pages 1 hour read

Athol Fugard

The Road to Mecca

Fiction | Play | Adult | Published in 1985

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Act II

Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Act II Summary

Act II starts up a few minutes later, as Marius, Elsa, and Helen all sit at Helen’s table. Marius has brought vegetables for Helen and chides her about her diet, telling Elsa that Helen’s former vegetable garden “has been crowded out by other things” (41). Elsa tells Marius that the Karoo looked “dry and desolate” as she drove through it on her way to visit Helen, and she judges it, telling Marius she sees it as “God without mankind” (42). Marius pushes back on this and says she “judge[s] it too harshly” (42). Elsa asks if the “Coloured folk” in the town have “as many reasons to be as contented as you,” and Marius says that they “have every reason to be,” telling Elsa, “It is my world—and Helen’s—and we can’t expect an outsider to love or understand it as we do” (43).

Elsa leaves the room and Marius tells Helen he believes he and Elsa could start arguing. Marius then tells Helen that he needs to leave soon to write his next sermon, saying, “And, thanks to you, I know what I want to say” (44). Marius explains that when he was digging up the vegetables in his garden, he heard a little

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