We have Provided the NCERT/CBSE Solutions chapter-wise for Class 12 English Vista Chapter 8 Memories of Childhood with Answers by expert subject teacher for latest syllabus and examination. Students also can take a free NCERT Solutions of Memories of Childhood. Each question has right answer Solved by Expert Teacher.
NCERT Solutions Class 12 English Flamingo Vista
Reading with Insight
Q1. The two accounts that you have read above are based in two distant cultures. What is the commonality of theme found in both of them?
Answer: Both the episodes in this unit highlight the despise, racial discrimination, and unhealthy treatment towards the humanity in general and women in particular. The first account relates to an American Indian woman who becomes the victim of racial discrimination. She is admitted to a school where native Indians do not get dignity, respect, honour and due weightage in America. She is forced by the whites to follow their traditions and traits. Simmons, the girl, is dragged out and tied to a chair to shingle out her long hair. She cries, struggles, kicks, resists shows reluctance and she ultimately feels like one of the many animals driven by a herder.
In the second episode, Bama, a girl from Tamil Dalit-community is very upset to experience the curse of untouchability. The elders of her community have to bow low before the upper caste. They have to work hard for them. Such people do not get respect and honour. Both the women are from marginalised communities having two different cultures. They struggle hard and they work against exploitation, oppression, untouchability and racial discrimination. Ultimately their efforts get recognition. They have used pen-names in their writings.
Q2. It may take a long time for oppression to be resisted, but the seeds of rebellion are sowed early in life. Do you agree that injustice in any form cannot escape being noticed even by children?
Answer: Children are more sensitive and observant than the adults. They see, hear, feel and experience whatever happens around them. They are quick to note any deviation from the normal or any aberration.
Bama at first, thinks the behaviour of the elder of her community is quite funny. He is holding the packet by string and running with it awkwardly. But when she learns the reason of his behaviour in that particular manner her ire is aroused against the cruel, rich people of upper castes who shamelessly exploit them and heap humiliations on them. She is ready to rebel against the oppression by snatching the packet of vadai from the landlord and eating them herself. Her elder brother channelises her anger. He tells her to study with care and make progress. We see the seeds of rebellion in her.
Zitkala-Sa too shows that she has the seeds of rebellion in her even at an early age. Her friend Judewin tells her that the authorities are going to cut their long, heavy hair. She says that they have to submit, because they (authorities) are strong. But Zitkala-Sa rebels. She declares that she will not submit. She will struggle first. And, she does carry out her resolution. She hides herself to foil their attempt. When she is detected hiding under the bed and dragged out, she resists by kicking and scratching wildly. She is overpowered and tied fast in a chair, but she does not take things lying down. The spark of rebellion in her is not put out by oppression.
Q3. Bama’s experience is that of a victim of the caste system. What kind of discrimination does Zitkala-Sa’s experience depict?
What are their responses to their respective situations?
Answer: Zitkala-Sa is the victim of social discrimination beloging to a tribe of native Americans. The white-skinned settlers of Europe consider local tribes as inferior. They treat them like animals. Both Bama and Zitkala-Sa refuse to bow to the injustice they are subjected to. Both protest in their own way. Zitkala-Sa does not want her hair to be shingled as amongst her tribe, shingled hair is regarded as a sign of cowardice. She struggles with all her might, when she was tied to a chair. Towards the end, however, the little one has to give up. Bama, on her part, decides to work hard in her studies, so that others realise her worth and become her friends.
Extra Questions of Memories of Childhood
Q1. How, according to Annan, was the caste system discriminatory? How can one overcome the indignities?
Answer: Annan said that the lower caste people were never given any honour or dignity or respect. They were deprived of all that. Thus, the caste system was discriminatory. But, if they studied and made progress, they could throw away those indignities.
Q2. How did Zitkala-Sa’s first day in the land of apples begin?
Answer: The first day in school was a bitter and cold day. The noise made by the breakfast bell, the clatter of the shoes and the constant murmuring voices in a foreign tongue annoyed Zitkala-Sa. She saw girls marching into dining room wearing tight fitting clothes. Zitkala-Sa found this immodest.
Q3. How did the elder approach the landlord and offer him the packet?
Answer: The elder went straight up to the landlord. Then he bowed low and extended the packet towards him. He cupped the hand that held the string with his other hand. The landlord opened the parcel and began to eat the vadais.
Q4. What advice did Annan offer Bama?
Answer: Annan asked Bama to study hard and to top all exams. He also told her that if she was successful in life, people would come to her of their own accord.
Q5. Why was Zitkala-Sa in tears on the first day in the land of apples?
Answer: On the first day in the land of apples, Zitkala-sa was in tears. The main reason of tears was that her hair was mercilessly cut. She had heard from her mother that only unskilled warriors, who were captured, had their hair shingled by the enemy. That is why she shook her head in resistance.
Q6. What did Zitkala-Sa feel when her long hair was cut?
Answer: Zitkala-Sa was terribly shocked. She was in tears. She cried for her mother. However, no one came to comfort or reason out with her.
Q7. What did Zitkala-Sa feel when her long hair was cut? ‘
Answer: When she heard them remove one of her thick braids, she lost her spirit. She had suffered utmost indignities there. People had stared at her. She had been tossed about in the air like a wooden puppet and now her long hair was shingled like a coward’s. In her anguish, she moaned for her mother. She felt herself as one of the many little animals driven by a herder.
Q8. How was Zitkala-Sa’s hair cut?
Answer: Zitkala-Sa’s hair was cut even after her resistance and strong opposition. It was all in vain since her stiff resistance was met with equally stiff efforts. She was tied to a chair and amidst her loud disapproval, her hair was cut.
Q9. Why, do you think, was Zitkala-Sa so opposed to cutting of her hair?
Answer: Zitkala-Sa had heard from her mother that only unskilled warriors, who were captured, had their hair shingled by the enemy. Among their people, short hair was worn by mourners, and shingled hair by cowards. Since she was neither, she was dead against cutting of her long hair.
Q10. What was the bitter truth of their life that Annan told Bama?
Answer: Annan told Bama about the caste system that subjugated Dalits in the society. He added that being bom into a lower caste community, one could never get honour or dignity or respect. It was education alone that could help them earn respect.
Q11. What kind of discrimination did Bama and Zitkala-Sa experience? How did they respond to their respective situations?
Answer: Both Bama and Zitkala-Sa are victims of racial discrimination. Zitkala-Sa was a Native American and their community was treated poorly. The white skinned settlers of Europe considered local tribes as inferior. Similarly, Bama was a Dalit and was treated badly by the higher caste people.
Q12. How was the search made for Zitkala-Sa?
Answer: First, they called out her name in the hall in loud voices. Then the steps were quickened. The voices became excited. The sounds came nearer. Women and girls entered the room. They opened closet doors. They peeped behind large trunks. Someone threw up the curtains. The room was filled with sudden light. Someone stooped, looked under the bed and found her there.
Q13. Describe how Zitkala-Sa tried in vain to save her hair from being cut. Why did she want to save her hair?
Answer: Zitkala-Sa went upstairs and crawled under a bed to hide herself. But to her plight, she was caught and brought downstairs and tied to a chair. Though she made many voluble protests, they were not fruitful. She cried, shook her head all the while but could not avoid her hair from being shingled.
Q14. Name some of the novelties and oddities in the streets that attracted Bama?
Answer: These included the performing monkey, the snakecharmer’s snake, the cyclist who had kept on biking for three days, the spinning wheels, the Maariyaata temple and the huge bell hanging there. She also noticed the pongal offerings being cooked in front of the temple.
Q15. How was the attire of the girls in school different from Zitkala-Sa?
Answer: The girls at school wore stiff shoes and closely fitted dresses. The small girls wore sleeved aprons and shingled hair. Zitkala-Sa wore soft moccasins, and had wrapped a blanket on her shoulders. She found the tight-fitting clothes rather immodest.
Q16. What sort of shows or entertainments attracted the passers-by?
Answer: Sometimes various political parties put up a stage. They addressed people through their mikes. There might be a street play, a puppet show, or a “no magic, no miracle” stunt performance. There was some entertainment or the other happening there from time to time.
Q17. Who was Gertrude Simmons?
Answer: Gertrude Simmons was an extraordinarily talented and educated Native American woman who struggled and triumphed at a time when severe prejudice prevailed against Native American culture and women. As a writer, she adopted the pen name, Zitkala-Sa. Her works criticized traditional dogma, and her life as a Native American woman was dedicated against the evils of oppression.
Q18. How were the threshing proceedings going on in the corner of the street?
Answer: There was a threshing floor set up in the comer of the street. People were hard at work. They were driving cattle in pairs, round and round, to tread out the grain from the straw. The animals were muzzled so that they couldn’t eat the straw. Bama stood there watching for fun. The landlord was watching the proceedings. He was seated on a piece of sacking spread over a stone ledge.
Q19. What were the sights that fascinated little Bama as she walked home from school?
Answer: Bama enjoyed the entertaining novelties and oddities on the streets, on her way home from school. The performing monkey, the antics of the snake-charmer, the cyclist at his cycle for three days, the Maariyaata temple and the huge bell, the pongal offerings being cooked, the dried fish stall, the sweet stall, the stall selling fried snacks, the street light changing colour, and other such sights fascinated her.
Q20. How did Bama react on learning about untouchability?
Answer: Bama became sad on listening how the upper caste people behaved towards low caste persons like them. She felt provoked and angry. She wanted to touch those vadais herself. She wondered why their elders should run errants for the miserly rich upper caste landlords and hand them over things reverently, bowing and shrinking all the while.
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