The Browning Version – English – (NCERT Solutions for Class 11)

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TEXTBOOK QUESTIONS SOLVED

A. UNDERSTANDING THE TEXT

  1. Comment on the attitude shown by Taplow towards Crocker-Harris.

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    Ans. Taplow is respectful towards Mr. Crocker-Harris and likes him for his principles. He criticises him for being a feelingless person yet regards him an extraordinary master. He is mortally afraid of him and dare not cut the extra work even on the last day of the term.
  2. Does Frank seem to encourage Taplow’s comments on Crocker-Harris?

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    Ans. Yes, Frank seems to encourage Taplow’s comments on Crocker-Harris. He shows appreciation for Taplow’s imitation of Mr Crocker-Harris and asks him to repeat it. On another occasion, Frank tells Taplow not to keep a good joke (narrated in the style of Mr Crocker Harris) to himself but to tell it to others.
  3. What do you gather about Crocker-Harris from the play?

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    Ans. Mr Crocker-Harris appears as a stern master who is a man of principles and stickler to the rules. He believes in fair assessment of his students and is not swayed by emotions, as the man is hardly human. He is not a sadist, but strict in performance of his duties. Even on his last day at school, when he is over-busy in his own affairs, he does not neglect his duty towards his students.

B TALKING ABOUT THE TEXT
Discuss with your partners.

  1. Talking about teachers among friends.

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    Ans. Commenting on their teachers is something that most students do. Students are quite intelligent and keen observers. Teachers are their role models and the students judge their performance not only on the basis of their mastery over the subject but also by their method of teaching, communication skills, interaction with students and their general nature and behaviour. Teachers must not feel offended to learn the nick name their dear students have showered upon them. Teachers may sometimes think that the boys don’t understand anything, but this is wrong. Talking about teachers among friends is a favourite pastime of students. They appreciate their virtues and condemn their shortcomings. Even strict persons win the love and admiration of students if they are men of principles.
  2. The manner you adopt when you talk about a teacher to other teachers.

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    Ans. We should be respectful and polite when we talk about a teacher to other teachers. Normal courtesy requires that we should add `Mr’ Miss’ or ‘Mrs’ before the name of the teacher and use his/her full name. A teacher should never be mentioned by the nick name he/she has been given. In other words, our approach should be quite formal. The dignity of a teacher should not be lowered before another, even if the person being talked about lacks some qualities you like most. Our remarks should never be derogatory or rude. It is bad manners to run down our teachers and specially so if it is done in the presence of other teachers. We are judged by our actions as well as words. The other teachers may form a very low and unfavourable opinion about us on the basis of a lapse on our part. Hence we must be extra cautions during our interactions with our teachers.
  3. Reading plays is more interesting than studying science.

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    Ans. Science is based on the study of some facts, concepts, principles and their application. It demands cool reasoning and concentration of mind to solve numerical problems and to balance complicated equations. One has to be alert, regular, systematic and punctual. If we miss one class, we miss the link. On the other hand, reading plays provide us more amusement. Most of the plays contain a beautiful plot and a number of characters with diverse traits. Their actions, reactions and interactions provide a lot of fun and laughter and make the reading of the play quite interesting. Witty dialogues, irony of situations and intricacies of plots make the plays full of humour and quite absorbing. We never feel bored while reading a play. Every dialogue or action unfolds something new and we eagerly wait for what is to follow next. The study of science proves dull and cold as compared to the interesting reading of plays.

C . WORKING WITH WORDS
A sadist is a person who gets pleasure out of giving pain to others.

  1. Given below are some dictionary definitions of certain kinds of persons. Find out the words that fit these descriptions:
    1. A person who considers it very important that things should be correct or genuine e.g. in the use of language or in the arts: P…
    2. A person who believes that war and violence are wrong and will not fight in a war: P…
    3. A person who believes that nothing really exists: N…
    4. A person who is always hopeful and expects the best in all things: 0….
    5. A person who follows generally accepted norms of behaviour: C
    6. A person who believes that material possessions are all that matter in life: M…

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    Ans. 1. Purist                        2. Pacifist                         3. Nihilist
    4. Optimist                         5. Conformist                     6. Materialist
  2. Notice the following words in the text. Guess the meaning from the context.
    ➢ remove                         ➢ kept in                                              ➢ sadist
    ➢ slackers                        ➢ got carried away                             ➢ shrivelled up
    ➢ muck                             ➢ cut

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    Ans. ➢ remove: a form/class or division (in a school)
    ➢ slackers: persons who are lazy and avoid work muck: dirt/mud something very unpleasant
    ➢ kept in: made to study in classroom after school hours
    got carried away:  got very excited; lost control of feelings
    cut: miss class
    sadist: a person who gets pleasure out of giving pain to others.
    ➢ shrivelled up: squeezed up

D. THINGS TO DO
Work in pairs
Based on the text enact your own version of the play.

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Ans. Left for self-attempt.
Hint: Instead of conventional role play involving reading out or enacting the original text, make your own version of the play based on the same content. Show your creativity, authenticity and sense of humour.

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