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The Last Lesson NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Flamingo Chapter 1
The Last Lesson Think as you read
Q1. What was Franz expected to be prepared with, for school that day?
Answer: M Hamel, who was Franz’s French teacher, had wanted the students to be prepared for a lesson on participles, in grammar.
Q2. What did Franz notice that was unusual about the school that day?
Answer: Usually, when school began, there was a great bustle, which could be heard out in the street. But it was all very still that day. Everything was as quiet as Sunday morning. There was no opening or closing of desks. His classmates were already in their places. The teacher’s great ruler instead of rapping on the table, was under M. Hamel’s arm.
Q3. What had been put up on the bulletin-board?
Answer: The bulletin board displayed the news that an order had come from Berlin to teach only German in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine. The teaching of the French language was discouraged and had to be discontinued. The French districts of Alsace and Lorraine had been taken over by the Prussians and the ban on French language came about as a result.
Q4. What changes did the order from Berlin cause in school that day?
Answer: M. Hamel had put on his best dress—his beautiful green coat, his frilled shirt and the little black silk cap, all embroidered. The whole school seemed so strange and solemn. On the back benches that were always empty, the elderly village people were sitting quietly like the kids.
Q5. How did Franz’s feelings about M Hamel and the school change?
Answer: Franz felt sorry for not learning his French lessons when he realized that he was to receive his last lesson in French that day. His books, that had seemed such a bother a while back, seemed precious to him and he felt he could not give them up. He had disliked his teacher, M Hamel, previously, but he felt sad on that day at the thought of his leaving.
UNDERSTANDING THE TEXT
Q1. The people? in this story suddenly realise how1 precious their language is to them. What shows you this? Why does this happen?
Answer: M. Hamel told the students and villagers that henceforth only German would be taught in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine. Those who called themselves Frenchmen would neither be able to speak nor write it. He praised French as the most beautiful, the clearest and most logical language in the world. He said that for the enslaved people, their language was the key to their prison. Then the people realised how precious their language was to them. This shows people’s love for their own culture, traditions and country. Pride in one’s language reflects pride in the motherland.
Q2.Franz thinks, “Will they make them sing in German, even the pigeons?” What could this mean?
(There could be more than one answer.)
Answer: i)When Franz wondered whether they would even make the pigeons sing in German, he uses it as a metaphor to mean that the French language was as natural to them as cooing was to the pigeons. Robbing them of their right to speak in their own tongue and forcing the German language on them would call for unnatural practice.
ii)It is difficult for people to accept a language which is imposed on them. French was their mother tongue and they were comfortable using it as their own. It would not be easy to switch to a different language.
TALKING ABOUT THE TEXT
Q1. “When a people are en slaved, as long as th ey hold fast to their language it is as if they had the key to their prison.”
Can you think of examples in history where a conquered people had their lan¬guage taken away from them or had a language imposed on them?
Answer: Mother tongue helps a person to express his feelings and thoughts most lucidly and intimately. Conquerors try to subdue and control the people of the enslaved territory by enforcing many measures such as use of force to crush dissent and imposing their own language on them.
From time immemorial the victorious nations have imposed their own language on the conquered people and taken away their own language from them. The Romans conquered many parts of Europe and replaced the local languages by their own language— Latin. Later on Spanish, Pourtuguese, Italian and French developed from Latin. The Muslim invaders imposed Arabic and Persian in the countries of Asia overpowered by them. In many Arab countries the local religion and language have disappeared. In India, a new language Urdu developed from the mixture of Persian and Hindi.
Q2. What happens to a linguistic minority in a state? How do you think they can keep their language alive?
For example—Punjabis in Bangalore
Tamilians in Mumbai
Kannadigas in Delhi
Gujaratis in Kolkata
Answer:Preserving Language Preserves Identity!
Language is an important marker of identity. Even while speaking the same language, social groups differentiate themselves by the way they talk. Thus, language offers a way of stating resistance to cultural uniformity. A native language goes beyond simple differentiation.
It represents a whole cultural history. Most people recognise the importance and value of indigenous culture and linguistic tradition and thus create opportunities where the languages can be used for a wider range of purposes than simply conversing with grandparents.
First, they often form social clubs and publish their own newsletters that bind them together. They encourage popular entertainment through their mother tongue. They encourage viewing of TV programmes and movies that are subtitled in their mother tongue. They often assume an active role in language and cultural preservation.
Although children of minorities are no longer subjected to corporal punishment for using their home language, they are often the target of other, more subtle forms of rejection and ostracism. Thus, these children begin ignoring their native language. Often, overt put- downs come from peer groups belonging to other linguistic belts. To prevent this, elders of the community try to send children where there are others like them who show greater respect and appreciation for their culture.
However, we must all contribute to keeping native languages alive. To do this, it is essential to practise communicating in it. If the use of a language is declining, it is necessary to identify special occasions and designate special times and places to use the language. The community must provide direction, but unless the school system participates in the effort, it may lack credibility in the eyes of the youth.
Q3. Is it possible to carry pride in one’s language too far? Do you know what “lin¬guistic chauvinism” means?
Answer. ‘Linguistic chauvinism’ means an aggressive and unreasonable belief that your own language is better than all others. This shows an excessive or prejudiced support for one’s own language. Sometimes pride in one’s own language goes too for and the linguistic enthusiasts can be easily identified by their extreme zeal for the preservation and spread of their language. In their enthusiasm, love and support for their own language, they tend to forget that other languages too have their own merits, long history of art, culture and literature behind them. Instead of bringing unity and winning over others as friends, having excessive pride in one’s own language creates ill-will and disintegration. The stiff-resistance to the acceptance of Hindi as national language by the southern states of India is a direct outcome of the fear of being dominated by Hindi enthusiasts. The result is that ‘One India’ remains only a slogan.
The Last Lesson Working with words
Q1. English is a language that contains words from many other languages. This inclusiveness is one of the reasons it is now a “world language”. For example:
petite – French
kindergarten – German
capital – Latin
democracy – Greek
bazaar – Hindi
Find out the origins of the following words:
Answer:Tycoon – It is borrowed from the Japanese word taikun, meaning ‘great lord’.
Barbecue – It is borrowed from the Spanish barbacoa, a framework used for storing meat or fish that was to be dried or smoked. It was also used to mean a framework on which one could sleep. The Spanish word came from the Arawak barbacoa, meaning ‘a framework of sticks on posts’ referring to the framework of such a structure.
Zero – The word zero comes through the Arabic literal translation of the Sanskrit shunya meaning void or empty, into cifr meaning empty or vacant. Through transliteration, this became zephyr or zephyrus in Latin. The word zephyrus already meant ‘west wind’ in Latin; the proper noun Zephyrus was the Roman god of the West Wind (after the Greek god Zephyros). With its new use for the concept of zero, zephyr came to mean a light
breeze – an almost nothing.
Tulip – The word originated in Turkey. It was derived from dulband which meant turban and somewhat described the shape of the flower.
Veranda – The word originated in India where it is found in several native languages. However, it may have been an adaptation of the Portuguese and Spanish word baranda referring to a railing, balustrade, or balcony.
Ski – The word ‘ski’ (pronounced ‘shee’ in Norwegian) is derived from the old Norsk word skith meaning to split a piece of firewood.
Logo – A logo (from the Greek word logotipos) is a graphic element, symbol, or icon of a trademark or brand and together with its logotype, set in a unique typeface or arranged in a particular way.
Robot – Robot comes from the Czech word robot, which means worker.
Trek – It is borrowed from the Dutch word trekken which means to draw, pull, or travel.
Bandicoot – Bandicoot, a large rat, derives its name from Pandhikoku in Telugu, which meant pig-like.
WORKING WITH WORDS
Q1. English is a language that contains words from many other languages. This inclusiveness is one of the reasons it is now a “world language”. For example’.
petite – French
kindergarten – German
capital – Latin
democracy – Greek
bazaar – Hindi
Find out the origins of the following words:
tycoon barbecue zero
tulip veranda ski
logo robot trek
Answer.Word Origin Word Origin
Tycoon Japanese Veranda Portuguese
Tulip Persian Robot Czech
Logo Greek Zero Arabic
Bandicoot Telugu Ski Norwegian
Barbecue Spanish Trek South African Dutch
Q2. Notice the underlined words in these sentences and tick the option that best explains their meaning:
(a) “What a thunderclap these words were to me!”
The words were
(i)loud and clear.
(ii)startling and unexpected.
(iii) pleasant and welcome.
(b)“When a people are enslaved, as long as they hold fast to their language it is as if they had the key to their prison.”
It is as if they have the key to the prison as long as they
(i)do not lose their language.
(ii)are attached to their language.
(iii)quickly learn the conqueror’s language.
(c)Don’t go so fast, you will get to your school in plenty of time. You will get to your school.
(d)I never saw him look so tall.
M. Hamel (i) had grown physically taller.
(ii) seemed very confident.
(iii) stood on the chair.
Answer. (a) (ii) startling and unexpected.
(b) (ii) are attached to their language.
(c)(iii) early enough.
(d)(ii) seemed very confident.
The Last Lesson Extra Questions and Answers
1.Read this sentence:
M. Hamel had said that he would question us on participles.
In the sentence above, the verb form “had said” in the first part is used to indicate an “earlier past”. The whole story is narrated in the past. M. Hamel’s “saying” happened earlier than the events in this story. This form of the verb is called the past perfect.
Pick out five sentences from the story with this form of the verb and say why this form has been used.
Answer. (i)For the last two years all our bad news had come from there.
Reason: The ‘coming’ of bad news happened earlier than the bulletin in the story.
(ii)Hauser had brought an old primer.
Reaeon : The event of ‘bringing’ happened earlier than Franz noticed it.
(iii) That was what they had put up at the town-hall!
Reason’. The ‘putting up’ of bulletin happened earlier. Now it is recalled.
(iv)they had not gone to school more.
Reason’. The action of ‘not going* happened much earlier.
(v)the hopvine that he had planted himself twined about the windows to the roof.
Reason’. The ‘planting’ of hopvine happened earlier than its twining about the windows.
The Last Lesson Extra Questions and Answers
Q1.Why was Franz unhappy as he set out for school?
Answer:Franz was unhappy chiefly for two reasons. He had started very late for school that morning and expected his teacher to reprimand him for running late. Secondly, he had not learnt his lesson on participles and was afraid his teacher, M Hamel, would punish him.
Q2.What little details does Franz notice as he walks to school? Why was he reluctant to go to school that day?
Answer: On Franz’s way to school, he observed how the weather was warm and bright, and the birds chirped melodiously. At a distance, Franz noticed the Prussian soldiers drilling. But soon, his attention was arrested by a crowd in front of the bulletin board. He was afraid of being hauled up by his teacher for not having learnt his French lessons and was reluctant to go to school.
Q3. What was the announcement on the bulletin board? When did Franz learn the contents of the announcement?
Answer:The bulletin board contained the unfortunate announcement that the French districts of Alsace and Lorraine had been conquered by the Prussians. Consequently, the notice carried an order to teach only German in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine. He learnt of the announcement when he reached school.
Q4.When Franz reached school that day he found the sight very unusual. Why?
Answer:When Franz reached school that day he found an uncanny calm, unlike usual days when there was a din of the opening and closing of desks, of lessons repeated in unison, and the teacher’s ruler rapping on the table.
Q5. What were the unfamiliar sights that Franz noticed as he entered the classroom?
Answer: Unlike the usual chaotic scene, Franz noticed that his classmates were seated in their places. There was an unusual calm and quiet. He noticed his teacher, M Hamel dressed in his Sunday best. The back benches that were usually empty were occupied by villagers sitting quietly. He was also surprised that M Hamel was quiet and took no note of Franz’s late arrival.
Q6. What does Monsieur Hamel reveal at the start of class?
Answer:M Hamel announced at the beginning of the class that it was to be their last lesson in French. He explained that there was an order from Berlin to teach only German in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine. It was therefore M Hamel’s last lesson, and he requested the students to be very attentive.
Q7. What were the evident changes in school after the order from Berlin?
Answer:There was an unnatural quiet in school that day. The students had new copies with “Vive La France!” written on them. The class was uncommonly filled up for M Hamel’s last lesson. The villagers turned up for the last class and sat quietly at the back. Everybody looked upset at having to let go of their French lessons.
Q8. Why were the villagers in the class that day?
Answer:After the announcement that German was to be taught in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine, the villagers came to school for the last French lesson. They regretted not having valued education previously. They also wanted to thank M Hamel for his forty years of faithful service to teaching. By attending the last lesson, it was their way of paying homage to their country that was no more theirs.
Q9. What did M Hamel say to Franz when he was unable to answer a question on participles?
Answer:When Franz could not recite the rules for the participle, he was scared of what M Hamel would say. But, much to his surprise, M Hamel did not scold him as usual. He expressed regret on Franz’s behalf for never getting the right opportunity to learn. He railed at parents for sending children to work instead of school. He also blamed himself for not doing his duty faithfully.
Q10. What did M Hamel say about the importance of language to the “enslaved” people?
Answer:M Hamel reiterated that French language was the most beautiful language in the world. He said it was the clearest and the most logical language, and even more importantly it was their own language. He felt they must guard and hold fast to their language as long as they could. He drew an analogy between their language and the key to their prison. Like the key, their language could liberate them.
Q11.What was the difference in teaching and learning after the order of the Government?
Answer:There was a yawning gap in the attitudes of the teacher and the taught after the order of the Government. Franz was amazed to see how well he understood his French lesson that day. Perhaps, it was because he had never listened so carefully or because M Hamel had never explained with so much patience. It seemed almost as if he wanted to give the students all he knew before going away.
Q12. How did Franz realize that announcement had left M Hamel heartbroken?
Answer:M Hamel seemed subdued and nostalgic as he neither scolded Franz when he arrived late in class, nor when he could not recite his lessons. He was reminded about his association with the class and looked sad. Hence, it seemed to Franz that he was heartbroken to leave.
Q13. The last moments with M Hamel were very emotional. What final words did M Hamel write on the board?
Answer:Hauser, one of the villagers, cried as he spelled the letters. His voice trembled with emotion as he spoke. At twelve, M Hamel stood up, choked with emotions. All he was able to do was write “Vive La France!” on the blackboard. He sagged back on the wall, and without a word signalled to them to go.
The Last Lesson Long Answer Questions
Q1. How did little Franz’s feelings alter before he left for school and on his way to school?
Answer:Before Franz set out for school he was in dread of a scolding, because he was late for school that morning. Moreover, he was scared to be tested on participles by his French teacher, M Hamel, for he was ill-prepared. Hence he thought of playing the truant and spending the day outdoors. As he walked about, the weather . was warm and bright. His spirits also lifted when he saw the Prussian soldiers drilling. He was a little apprehensive when he saw a crowd in front of the bulletin board as this sight usually spelt bad news. He resisted this desire and hurried off to school. The blacksmith teased him for being late to school. By the time he reached school he was out of breath.
Q2. Why was Franz scared that day 1 What did he see on his way to school and how did he get to his deski
Answer: Franz was not good at learning. He would rather take the day off and waste time in searching birds’ eggs or going sliding on the Saar. Franz was scared that day because M. Hamel had said that he would question them on participles. Franz did not know anything about participles.
He found that the day was warm and bright. The birds were chirping at the edge of the woods. The Prussian soldiers were drilling in the open fields. There was a crowd in front of the bulletin-board near the town-hall.
Franz found the school room unusually quiet. So, he had no option but to open the door and go in before everybody. He blushed and was frightened of the teacher. M. Hamel spoke very kindly to him and asked him to go to his place quickly. Franz jumped over the bench and sat down at his desk.
Q3.What was the scene in the classroom that alarmed Franz?
Answer:There was an eerie silence unlike usual days when there was a savage din of the opening and closing of desks, of lessons repeated in unison, and the teacher’s huge ruler rapping on the table. His classmates were in their places and his teacher, M Hamel, was dressed formally. On entering, he was surprised to see the village people sitting quietly on the back benches. He noticed how everybody looked sad. He was further astonished when M Hamel announced in a grave and gentle tone that it was to be their last lesson in French. The order had come from Berlin to teach only German in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine from then on.
Q5. What order had been received from Berlin that day? What effect did it have on the life at school?
Answer: An order had been received from Berlin that only German would be taught in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine. This order had far-reaching effects on the life at school. M. Hamel, who had been teaching French at the village school for the last forty years would deliver his last lesson that day.
It was in honour of the last lesson that M. Hamel, the teacher had put on his best clothes. Old men of the village were sitting quietly at the back of the classroom. They were sad as well as sorry for they had not gone to school more. They had come to thank the master for his forty years of faithful service and to show respect for the country that was theirs no more.
The teacher addressed the students in a solemn and gentle tone. He asked them to be attentive and explained everything quite patiently. He appealed to them to preserve French among them. During slavery it would act as key to the prison. He felt so overwhelmed by emotion that he could not bid farewell properly.
Q3.M Hamel’s reaction when Franz could not answer a question on participles was unlike what he had expected. Justify.
Answer:Franz had been reluctant to reach school as he had anticipated a scolding from his teacher. But much to his surprise when M Hamel noticed that Franz was mixed up on the basics; he did not scold him as usual. He said that Franz must be feeling bad himself. He added it was too late as they would never learn French in Alsace. Ironically, they were Frenchmen, who could neither speak nor write their own language.
M Hamel was also critical of their parents who put them to work on a farm or at the mills for a little more money rather than study. He also blamed himself for sending the students on errands instead of teaching them. He also regretted giving them a day off when he wanted to go fishing.
Q4. What do you think is the theme of the story ‘The Last Lesson’? What is the reason behind its universal appeal?
Answer:The theme of the story ‘The Last Lesson’ is linguistic chauvinism of the proud conquerors
and the pain that is inflicted on the people of a territory by them by taking away the right to study or speak their own language and thus make them aliens in their own land of birth. The story has a sub-theme also. It highlights the attitudes of the students and teachers to learning and teaching.
Though the story is located in a particular village of Alsace district of France which had passed into Prussian hands, it has a universal appeal. It highlights the efforts of the victors to crush their victims—the vanquished people in all possible manner—materially, spiritually, mentally and emotionally. Taking away mother tongue from the people is the harshest punishment. The proper equation between student and teacher, his focused attention, helpful and encouraging attitude and kind treatment can encourage students to learn better.
Q5.What was the impact of the announcement of the change on M Hamel?
Answer:The announcement shook M Hamel to his roots. He was kind to Franz and did not scold him for not learning his lessons. On the contrary, he blamed himself for not doing his duty faithfully. His formal attire reflected his serious attitude towards his work. He taught with passion and great patience. During the class, M Hamel sat motionless in his chair gazing as if he wanted to etch those last moments in his mind. It was evident that he was heartbroken to leave.
Q6. Comment on the appropriateness of the title ‘The Last Lesson’.
Answer: The story has an appropriate and suggestive title. It is the centre of attention throughout and the whole story revolves around it. The beginning of the story serves as preparation for it. The unusual quietness at school, presence of village elders and the teacher in his Sunday best dress—all point out to the unusual and unique occasion—the last lesson in French in a French village school in a district conquered by the Prussians. While delivering the last lesson, the teacher wants to transmit all his knowledge in one go. He explains everything with patience and the students as well as old villagers listen attentively.
For the narrator it is an unforgettable experience. “Ah, how well I remember it, that last lesson,” says he. Old Hauser is crying and his voice trembled with emotion. As the teacher is unable to express His emotions because of choked throat, he ends the lesson by writing Wive La France’ on the blackboard. He makes a gesture with his hand to indicate that the school is dismissed and students can go home.
Q7. Discuss the last moments in the class on the last day of the French lesson.
Answer:The last moments of the French lesson were evocative of their freedom and their way of life coming to an end. Old Hauser sat at the back of the room wearing his spectacles and holding his primer in both hands. As he spelled the letters, he was crying. His voice trembled with emotion, so that all of them wanted to laugh and cry.
When the church clock struck twelve, the trumpets of the Prussians, returning from drill, were heard. M Hamel stood up, and could not go on with his speech. His voice was choked. All he could do was write on the board, as large as he could: “Vive La France!” He fell back against a wall, dejected and gestured to his , students, with his hand, to leave.
Q8. What impression do you form of M. Hamel on the basis of your study of the story ‘The Last Lesson’?
Answer: M. Hamel is an experienced teacher who has been teaching in that village school for forty years. He imparts primary education in all subjects. He is a hard task master and students like Franz, who are not good learners, are in great dread of being scolded by him.
The latest order of the Prussian conquerors upsets him. He has to leave the place for ever and feels heart broken. He feels sad but exercises self-control. He has the courage to hear every lesson to the last.
His performance during the last lesson is exemplary. He is kind even to a late comer like Franz. He uses a solemn and gentle tone while addressing the students. He has a logical mind and can analyse problems and deduce the reasons responsible for it. The problem for Alsace is that he (the district) puts off learning till tomorrow.
He knows the emotional hold of a language over its users. He is a good communicator and explains everything patiently. Partings are painful and being human, M. Hamel too is no exception. He fails to say goodbye as his throat is choked. On the whole, he is a patriotic gentleman.
Q9.How does telling the story from young Franz’s point of view affect the reader’s reaction to the story? How does this point of view help build suspense at the start of the story?
Answer:Telling the story from young Franz’s point of view makes it particularly moving as it voices Franz’s childlike concerns. The fears and apprehensions of a child arrest the attention of the readers.
Franz’s anxiety of running into trouble with his teacher stirs the readers’ concern. One is worried about his % reception as he reaches his school late. Every moment, one wants to know what is in store for little Franz. After learning of the order from Berlin to teach only German in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine, the readers’ concerns increase.
The readers leam to love the French language as the most beautiful language and also share Franz’s childlike fascination with the new copies given by M Hamel. Franz’s concerns worry the readers; they keenly feel his disappointment of losing his French lessons.
Q10.The story helps one realize how precious one’s own language is. Justify.
Answer:With the announcement of the change in Government, the situation and people’s reaction was radically altered. The usual noisy scene at the school was replaced by the one which was as quiet as the Sunday church. The students’ earnestness was reflected in their enthusiasm for the last lesson. So much so that even the elderly village people came and sat quietly in the class like students.
Sadness was writ large on their faces. The students felt sorry for M Hamel as he was made to discontinue his French lessons. Franz regretted not having studied well. The students endeavoured to pay unwavering attention to their last lesson, even M Hamel taught with a rare lucidity and passion
Q1. Young Franz grows up into a fine young lad. He recalls his “last lesson” with tenderness as it taught him the greatest lesson on patriotism. Write Franz’s feeling in the form of a diary entry.
I was like any other child, postponing duties and jobs with a perpetual feeling that there was plenty of time to do things. I felt going to school was a drudgery and studying, sheer boredom. But that day the most unexpected thing happened! We received an order from Berlin instructing compulsory education of German in the schools of Alsace and Lorraine. It was a crucial day when the realization dawned on all, young and old. The loss of language and the loss of freedom for France shook our being.
Our parents had preferred us working on the farms and mills instead of having us leam at school. We were in fact postponing the lessons of life, oblivious to the fact that life is subject to change. Our French teacher, M Hamel, taught us for the last time that day. The last lesson symbolized the changing order of life and its impact on the sensibilities and emotions of people. Our teacher taught us to hold firm to our love for our mother tongue, and consequently our sense of liberation. I remember the soldiers marching under the windows, representing the dawn of Prussia in France, the defeat of the French people and the resultant threat to their language and culture. We painfully realized the importance of all that we would be deprived of.
Our teacher ended the class by writing the bold message of “Long live France” on the blackboard, instilling in us an undying pride in our nation and language.
Q2. War causes destruction and spreads hatred. People feel insecure. Discuss the disadvan¬tages of war keeping in mind Franco-Prussian war (1870-71).
Answer: War is a great threat to mankind. Fear, anxiety, tension and hatred are some of the offsprings of war. No individual is in favour of this brutal act. Innocent people lose their life because of the vested interests of some of the corrupt politicians. Moreover, war is not the solution to any problem. It only increases the hiatus between two nations. The desire to overpower the other disseminates hatred and the feelings of enmity. The aftermaths of Hiroshima and Nagasaki are evident before us. It should also be remembered that each nation is trying its level best to become a nuclear power. A nuclear bomb has the power to devastate nations. Thousands of people will lose their lives. There will not be any survivor. If someone is left alive, he/she will be crippled. There is no doubt that war has put the human existence at stake. We have heard seers say that one should shed one’s ego. The nations should also feel equally important. No nation is self-sufficient. Peace enhances creativity and productivity. The concept of a global village should be followed by all countries. Thus, war does not benefit any individual. It must not be encouraged.
Q3. It is often said that each language is unique in itself. No language is superior or inferior. People need to understand that a language is one of the means of communication. Discuss this statement in the light of the following lines:
“My children, this is the last lesson I shall give you. The order has come from Berlin to teach only German in schools of Alsace and Lorraine. The new master comes tomorrow. This is your last French lesson…”
Answer: Language is always considered a medium of communication. Man is a gregarious animal. He has to interact with the fellow human beings. Therefore, a set of complex symbols is designed to serve this purpose. We must ruminate over the past before discussing the status of a language. There are innumerable man made problems. At the dawn of civilisation there was no discrimination on the basis of caste, colour, creed, language and nationality. But in this century these problems exist. Nature does not segregate nations. Scientific advancement, material prosperity, lofty aspirations, materialistic attitude, a desire to rule the world and vested interests are some of the causes of human sufferings. The concepts of all languages are similar. They have nouns, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions and conjunctions. As no religion is insignificant in the same way no language is inferior. The characteristics and nature of all languages are similar. The only difference is in symbols and pronunciation. The purpose and objective of all languages are synonymous. There is a dire need to understand that there should be only one religion i.e. humanity and there should be only one language i.e. the language of love. A language must not become the cause of rift among masses. It should bring people together instead of spreading hatred. One should not despise others because of their language. It is against human dignity and grace.
Q4. The people of Alsace and Lorraine were forced to study German. They were not allowed to study French. It implies that students of the area were taught only one language. They did not follow the concept of three languages at school. Write an article on the topic Advantages of Three Language System at school.
Advantages oThree Language System
Answer: India is a democratic stater. It is replete with people who have diverse backgrounds, and culture. Their customs and traditions vary. Their languages are also different. The language of a South Indian is entirely different from that of the North Indians. People have their regional languages and dialects too. In such circumstances it becomes a herculean task to decide which language should be taught at schools. So, India opted for three language system at schools. It is a boon to the residents of a particular area. They do not feel that their language is insignificant and ignored. They are given ample opportunities to opt for the languages they intend to speak or learn. Pupils get fundamental knowledge of three languages and can appreciate the literature of all these three languages. Such students never face failure due to language barriers. They bring laurels to their parents and nations as well. They explore new avenues and horizons with an astonishing ease. Three language system must be adopted by all nations so as to acquaint the children with various language patterns. The people of Alsace and Lorraine could be taught both languages i.e. German and French. Linguistic discrimination mars the future of humanity.
Q5. Nature has the knack to fascinate even the cynics. Its beauty and spontaneous music galvanise the beings. Write an article expressing the astounding beauty of nature in the light of the following lines:
“It was so warm, so bright! The birds were chirping at the edge of the woods… It was all much more tempting than the rule for participles…”
Answer. Our touch with nature makes the whole world kin. Matthew Arnold has rightly said that:
“Nature, with equal mind,
sees all her sons at play,
sees man control the wind,
the wind sweep man away.”
Nature’s working is mysterious. It is an astonishingly fabricated universe. Man has, undoubtedly, progressed a lot. Scientific advancement has explored the portals of every field. The hidden realities have been exposed. But science has not unearthed the mysterious traits of nature. It is also an acceptable fact that nature gives happiness to weary minds. It soothes and consoles the troubled souls. It banishes anxiety, tension, worry, fear and dejection. Its law is to please every beholder. The aesthetic pleasure we derive from Nature is incredible and cannot be expressed in words. Keats has rightly averred that ‘A thing of beauty is a joy forever!’ Lord Byron has said:
“There is a pleasure in the pathless wood,
there is a rapture on the lonely shore,
there is a society where none intrudes, ‘
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less but nature more.”
Nature is our mother. It must be obeyed. It gives us moral lessons. All the seers and intellectuals have understood the significance of nature. “Nature goes on her own way, and all that to us seems an exception is really according to order.” It fascinates those who are indifferent to life. The boring scientific explorations and linguistic principles make our life insignificant. We are becoming devoid of emotions. But nature evokes sentiments and help us to become sensitive.
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NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Flamingo
- Class 12 English Chapter 1 The Last Lesson
- Class 12 English Chapter 2 Lost Spring
- Class 12 English Chapter 3 Deep Water
- Class 12 English Chapter 4 The Rattrap
- Class 12 English Chapter 5 Indigo
- Class 12 English Chapter 6 Poets and Pancakes
- Class 12 English Chapter 7 The Interview
- Class 12 English Chapter 8 Going Places
NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Flamingo Poetry
- Poem 1 My Mother at Sixty-six Class 12 English
- Poem 2 An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum Class 12 English
- Poem 3 Keeping Quiet Class 12 English
- Poem 4 A Thing of Beauty Class 12 English
- Poem 5 A Roadside Stand Class 12 English
- Poem 6 Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers Class 12 English
NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Vistas
- Class 12 English Chapter 1 The Third Level
- Class 12 English Chapter 2 The Tiger King
- Class 12 English Chapter 3 Journey to the end of the Earth
- Class 12 English Chapter 4 The Enemy
- Class 12 English Chapter 5 Should Wizard hit Mommy
- Class 12 English Chapter 6 On the face of It
- Class 12 English Chapter 7 Evans Tries an O-level
- Class 12 English Chapter 8 Memories of Childhood