Section B: Context Questions
I. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:Oliver Twist was born in a workhouse. His mother, a young woman, lay ill in bed. A doctor and an old woman stood by her side. She lifted her Let me see the child and die,' she said. "Oh, you mustn't talk about dying yet," said the doctor
(i) What is a workhouse? What does it say about the setting of the story?
Ans: A workhouse was a place where people who were unable to support themselves, such as the poor, elderly, and orphaned, were sent to live and work in exchange for basic necessities like food and shelter. The fact that Oliver Twist was born in a workhouse suggests that the story takes place in a time and place where poverty and inequality were significant issues. The setting reflects the pathetic condion of English society back then. It shows the "other side" (the poor people's perspective) It reflects the poor economic condition of the people.
(ii)Who were present in the room where Oliver was born? Why?
Ans: There were three people present in the room where Oliver was born: his mother, a doctor, and an old woman. The fact that Oliver's mother was in a workhouse suggests that she may not have had access to private medical care or the support of family members during her pregnancy and birth, so the doctor and an old woman were likely provided by the workhouse as part of their institutional care.
(iii) What was the Oliver's mother's wish? How did she try to fulfill her wish? What happened to the young woman soon after that?
Ans: Oliver's mother's final wish was to see her newborn child before she died. She tried to fulfill her wish by holding the child before she die she is saying "Let me see the child and die." Unfortunately, the young woman dies soon after giving birth to Oliver. The doctor pronounces her dead and notes that she was a good-looking girl with no wedding ring, indicating that she was unmarried.
(iv) What did the old woman tell her about her wish? What did the old woman say about her to the doctor?
Ans: As her final wish she wants to see her son and then die peacefully. on this old lady say "No dear, you are too young to die". The old woman say that the young woman was a good-looking girl and had no wedding ring she told the doctor that the girl had been brought their the previous night she had been found lying in the street and seemed to have walked a long way, and also had holes in them. Nobody knew where she came from or where she was going.
(v) what evidence is given in the story to say the young woman was poor and not married?
Ans: The evidence that suggests the young woman who gave birth to Oliver was poor and unmarried includes her worn-out shoes, the absence of a wedding ring, and her physical appearance. These details imply that she may have been in a difficult financial situation and lacked the resources to care for her child on her own, which is why she ended up in the workhouse where she gave birth.
II. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
The doctor raised the dead woman's left hand.
The usual story," he said. 1 see that she has no ring on her finger. She wasn't married. Good night!
He went home to his dinner. The old woman sat down on a chair in front of the fire and began to dress the baby. She dressed him in the very old
(i) When the doctor raised the young woman's hand, what did he notice? What does this indicate about the young woman?
Ans: When the doctor raised the young woman's left hand, he noticed that she did not have a ring on her finger. This indicates that the young woman was not married. In the context of the story, this detail helps to establish the young woman's social and economic status, as unmarried women in this time period often faced significant challenges in supporting themselves and their children.
(ii) what did the older men do after the doctor went home? What does this say about life in the workhouse?
Ans: After the doctor left for dinner, the old woman said down on a chair in front of the fire and dress the baby in very old clothes that were used for babies who were born in the workhouse. This highlights the harsh living conditions and lack of compassion towards the less fortunate during that time period.
(iii) who gave the name to the new baby? What logic did he follow while naming the babies?
Ans: Mr. Bumble, an important officer in the town, gave the name to the new baby. He followed the logic of naming the babies in alphabetical order, from A to Z. He named the last one Swubble and chose the name Oliver Twist for the newborn. He explained that the next baby would be named Unwin.
(iv) Oliver was an orphan "born into a world, which had no love or pity for him". Give example from the extract that Oliver experience, a lack of love.
Ans: One example from the extract that shows Oliver's lack of love is the fact that he and the other workhouse boys never had enough warm clothes or food. They were given only three meals of thin soup every day, and on Sundays, they had a small piece of bread. This shows that the workhouse authorities did not care about providing proper nutrition and warmth to the children in their care, indicating a lack of love and care toward them.
(v) what was the condition of children in England as shown in the story?
Ans: The story depicts the miserable conditions of children in England, especially those who were born into poverty and had no families to support them. Children in workhouses were subjected to harsh living conditions, inadequate food, and little to no care or affection. They were treated as if they had no value and were forced to work long hours in difficult conditions. The story also highlights the lack of support and resources available for women who found themselves in difficult circumstances, such as Oliver's mother.
III. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
(i)Why was no one able to discover the identity of the baby's parents?
Ans: No one was able to discover the identity of the baby's parents because the child was an orphan who was born in the workhouse. The mother was unknown and the father was never mentioned or identified. Mr Bumble, an important officer in the town, invented a name for the baby and claimed that they name new babies in alphabetical order from A to Z. This suggests that the workhouse was overcrowded and understaffed, and the babies born there were often abandoned or left without anyone to care for them.
(ii) who was Mr bumble? What did you do for the baby?
Ans: Mr Bumble was an important officer in the town, who was in charge of the workhouse where Oliver Twist was born. When no one could discover the baby's father or mother, Mr Bumble invented a name for him, Oliver Twist. He also made arrangements to have Oliver taken care of in the workhouse. However, he was not particularly kind to Oliver or the other children in his care, and he often punished them harshly.
(iii) How the babies were named? What does the name Twist Allude to?
Ans: The babies in the workhouse were named in alphabetical order from A to Z, with Mr. Bumble, an important officer in the town, inventing the names. For instance, the last baby was named "Swubble," and the next one would be "Unwin." Mr. Bumble chose the name "Oliver Twist" for the new baby. The name "Twist" alludes to the difficult and complex path that the baby's life is likely to take, as he is born into a world that has no love or pity for him.
(iv) Why did Olivia look thin and pale? How do you think the other babies look to give a reason to support your answer?
Ans: Oliver looked thin and pale because he, like the other workhouse boys, did not have enough nutritious food. They were given only three meals of thin soup every day, and on Sundays, they had a small piece of bread. The conditions of the workhouse were harsh, and the children were malnourished and poorly cared for, leading to physical weakness and illness. It is likely that the other babies in the workhouse also looked thin and pale due to the poor living conditions.
(v) what was the normal food given to the boys? What was the extra food given to them on Sunday? What does it reflect about the inmates of the workhouse?
Ans: According to the text, the boys in the workhouse were given only three meals of thin soup every day. On Sundays, they were given a small piece of bread. The extra food given to them on Sunday was just a small piece of bread. This reflects the extreme poverty and harsh conditions that the inmates of the workhouse faced. They were not given sufficient and nutritious food to maintain good health and were forced to live on meager portions of thin soup and bread. The lack of proper nutrition and inadequate food intake would have contributed to the poor health and weak physical condition of the children, including Oliver.
III. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
(i) What is said about the physical appearance of the master? why was he surprised?
Ans: It is said that the master was a "fat, healthy man", but when Oliver asked for more food, the master went very pale and looked at the small boy with surprise. The reason for the master's surprise was that Oliver's request for more food went against the established rules and expectations of the workhouse.
(ii) Why was Oliver hit with the Master's spoon? What was Oliver's asking for more food seen as?
Ans: Oliver was hit with the Master's spoon and was later punished for asking for more food because it was seen as an act of insolence and disobedience. The workhouse was a place where children were supposed to be grateful for whatever little they were given, and asking for more was seen as a violation of the rules and an act of rebellion. The Master's reaction and punishment of Oliver reflect the harsh and punitive conditions of the workhouse, where the children had no voice or rights and were subject to the absolute authority of their superiors.
(iii) Whom did the master call for help? What did that person say against Oliviar?
Ans: The master called for help and Mr. Bumble rushed into the room. When he heard what Oliver had said, he exclaimed, "He asked for more? I cannot believe it. One day they will hang the boy." This suggests that Mr. Bumble did not have a favorable opinion of Oliver and viewed him as a troublemaker.
(iv) How did he punish Olivier? What is the punishment proportionate to the offence?
Ans: Oliver was punished quite harshly for his request for more food. The master hit him with a spoon and Mr. Bumble proclaimed, "I cannot believe it... One day they will hang the boy." Oliver was then taken away and locked in a dark room for a week, where he was beaten and given little food. This punishment is not proportionate to the offence since it was just a request for more food, and the severity of the punishment is a reflection of the harsh and unforgiving environment of the workhouse.
(v) What are your feelings for young, helpless Oliver?
V. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
(i) Who is shut Oliver in a Cold dark room? where was Oliver imprisoned for a whole week and why?
Ans: Oliver was imprisoned in the coal darkroom as he had asked for more gruel because he was hungry and that was a crime in the eyes. of the organizers of the workhouse
(ii) What forced Oliver to make that offense? Why was he chosen to commit to that office?
(iii) was it proper for Mr bumble to beat Olivier in front of everyone? Why did he do so?
Ans: No, it was not proper for Mr. Bumble to beat Oliver in front of everyone. It was an act of humiliation and cruelty. Mr. Bumble beat Oliver in front of everybody so that all the other boys would see the punishment. Oliver was being given, and be frightened and never dare to ask for more food. He wants to set an example through the beating he gave Oliver.
(iv) What are you feelings for Mr bumble and the workhouse culture of Victorian times?
Ans: Mr. Bumble seems to be a cruel and authoritarian figure who takes pleasure in exerting his power over the poor and vulnerable. The workhouse culture of Victorian times was one of institutionalization and exploitation, where the poor were subjected to harsh living conditions, meagre food, and hard labour. Children were particularly vulnerable, and the treatment they received was often brutal and inhumane.
(v) Why could Olivia not sleep at night? What does it say about the condition of children in Victorian England?
Ans: Oliver could not sleep at night because he was hungry, cold, and scared. This reflects the poor condition of children in Victorian England, particularly those living in workhouses. Children in these institutions were often neglected, mistreated, and deprived of basic necessities like food, warmth, and affection. The workhouse system was designed to be punitive, rather than supportive, and many children were subjected to harsh discipline and long hours of labor.
VI. Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow:
(i) who was Mr. Sowerberry? Describe his appearance.
Ans: Mr. Sowerberry, was a tall and thin man who wore black clothes and made coffins. He earn money by making coffins for the poor people who died in the workhouse. He was described as having a "cadaverous face," which means his face looked thin and pale as if he were a corpse. He was also said to have a "deep voice," which suggests that he spoke in a low, serious tone.
(ii) what do you think his black clothes signify? What was the notice at the gate? What did the notice state?
Ans: The black clothes of Mr. Sowerberry, who was a coffin maker, signify that he was a professional mourner and his business was associated with death. The notice at the gate offered a reward of five pounds to anyone who would take Oliver Twist away from the workhouse. This notice reflected the callousness and indifference of the workhouse authorities towards the plight of the orphans and their eagerness to get rid of them.
(iii) why did Mr bumble say that he would be reached one day?
Ans: Mr. Bumble said that Mr. Sowerberry would be rich one day because he made coffins for the poor people who died in the workhouse. And due to the poor caring and nourishment many orphans are dying Mr. Sowerberry had a steady source of income, and as more and more people died in the workhouse, his business would grow. Therefore, Mr. Bumble predicted that Mr. Sowerberry would become rich one day.
(iv) Which theme of the story is reflected in the extract? Explain it briefly.
Ans: The extract reflects the theme of poverty, highlighting the desperate living conditions of people in the workhouse who lacked basic necessities like food and shelter. Mr. Sowerberry's job of making coffins for the poor who died in the workhouse illustrates the grim reality of poverty. The workhouse master's willingness to sell Oliver for a small amount of money highlights the exploitation of the vulnerable. Overall, the extract portrays the pervasive impact of poverty on people's lives during that time.
(v) what does the notice reflect about the treatment of children in Victorian times?
Ans: The notice reflects the harsh treatment of children in Victorian times. It was common for children to be put to work at a very young age, often in dangerous and unhealthy conditions, and for very little pay. The notice at the workhouse gate, offering a small reward for the return of a boy who had run away, shows how little value was placed on the lives of these children. The notice highlights the societal disregard for the welfare and rights of children during this time.
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