NCERT Solutions

Class 10 English

nelson mandela long walk to freedom

Q1)Why did such a large number of international leaders attend the inauguration? What did it signify the triumph of ?

A large number of international leaders attended the inauguration to show their support for the emancipation of the South African blacks after long years of fight against apartheid. It signified the triumph of tolerance over discrimination, justice over oppression and humanity over barbarity.

Q2)What does Mandela mean when he says he is “simply the sum of all those African patriots” who had gone before him ?

Mandela allows us a glimpse into his character formation as he reveals that he is built by the combination of courage, wisdom and generosity possessed by his African patriots who sacrificed their lives to see the light of freedom. He wants to pay tributes to his inspirations who with their efforts and struggles made the road to freedom easier for Mandela. Those heroes of yester years are the reason that Mandela could learn the true meaning of courage and win the support of the people of South Africa.

Q3)Would you agree that the “depths of oppression” create “heights of character”? How does Mandela illustrate this? Can you add your own examples to this argument?

Yes, I agree that the “ depths of oppression” create “heights of character”. Mandela vividly paints a picture of his countrymen suffering decades of humilation, brutality, oppression at the hands of the white supremacy which gave rise to brave, resilient , wise leaders of the likes of the Oliver Tambos, the Walter Sisulus, the Chief Luthulis, the Yusuf Dadoos, the Bram Fischers, the Robert Sobukwes of their time. The cruelty and struggles encouraged his countrymen to stand up and risk their lives for their belief, their freedom. I believe that adversity shapes a man. To quote some popular examples are fine statesmen like Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi, Winston Churchill and so on.

Q3)Would you agree that the “depths of oppression” create “heights of character”? How does Mandela illustrate this? Can you add your own examples to this argument?

Yes, I agree that the “ depths of oppression” create “heights of character”. Mandela vividly paints a picture of his countrymen suffering decades of humilation, brutality, oppression at the hands of the white supremacy which gave rise to brave, resilient , wise leaders of the likes of the Oliver Tambos, the Walter Sisulus, the Chief Luthulis, the Yusuf Dadoos, the Bram Fischers, the Robert Sobukwes of their time. The cruelty and struggles encouraged his countrymen to stand up and risk their lives for their belief, their freedom. I believe that adversity shapes a man. To quote some popular examples are fine statesmen like Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi, Winston Churchill and so on.

Q4)How did Mandela’s understanding of freedom change with age and experience?

As a child, Mandela considered himself to be born free as long as he followed his father’s orders and lived by the rules of his clan. As a student, he craved for freedom which he considered important for himself like staying out at night, reading what it pleases him and so on. However, as young man in Johannesburg, he yearned for the freedom to lead a basic, dignified life. Slowly, he realized that not only his freedom was restricted but everyone in his community was barred from leading a normal, lawful life. That is when his hunger for his own freedom transformed into the greater hunger for the freedom of his people.

Q5)How did Mandela’s ‘hunger for freedom’ change his life ?

As Mandela grew into adulthood, it dawned upon him that his restricted freedom was common across his entire community. This ‘hunger for freedom’ that arose in Mandela for a basic, dignified life transformed him from a weak, immature youth to a bold man, from a family loving person to the man who sacrificed his every personal desire for the greater good of his people. He joined the African National Congress and his life was changed forever.

Thinking about Language

I. There are nouns in the text (formation, government) which are formed from the corresponding verbs (form, govern) by suffixing -(at)ion or ment. There may be a change in the spelling of some verb – noun pairs: such as rebel, rebellion; constitute, constitution.

Make a list of such pairs of nouns and verbs

Noun Verb
Rebellion Rebel
Constitution Constitute
Government Govern
Obligation Oblige
Transformation Transform
Oppression Opress
Demonstration Demonstrate
Descrimination Discriminate
Formation Form
Imagination Imagine
Deprivation Deprive
Contribution Contribute

II)Read the paragraph below. Fill in the blanks with the noun forms of the verbs in brackets.

Martin Luther King’s (contribute) contribution to our history as an outstanding leader began when he came to the (assist) assistance of Rosa Parks, a seamstress who refused to give up her seat on a bus to a white passenger. In those days American Blacks were confined to positions of second class citizenship by restrictive laws and customs. To break these laws would mean (subjugate) subjugation and (humiliate) humiliation by the police and the legal system. Beatings, (imprison) imprisonment and sometimes death awaited those who defied the System. Martin Luther King’s tactics of protest involved non-violent (resist) resistance to racial injustice.

III) Here are some more examples of ‘the’ used with proper names. Try to say what these sentences mean. (You may consult a dictionary if you wish. Look at the entry for ‘the’.)

  1. Mr Singh regularly invites the Amitabh Bachchans and the Shah Rukh Khans to his parties.
  2. Many people think that Madhuri Dixit is the Madhubala of our times.
  3. History is not only the story of the Alexanders, the Napoleons and the Hitlers, but of ordinary people as well.

  1. It means that Mr Singh regularly invites popular personalities of the likes of Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan to his parties.
  2. It means that Madhuri Dixit is considered a great actress of our times. Her phenomenal acting is compared to another legendary actress of yesterday years, Madhubala.
  3. It means that history is not just about great fighters like the Alexanders, the Napoleons and the Hitlers but of ordinary people as well.

IV)Idiomatic Expressions
Match the italicised phrases in Column A with the phrase nearest in meaning in Column B. (Hint: First look for the sentence in the text in which the phrase in Column A occurs.)

1. I was not unmindful of the fact (i) had not forgotten; was aware of the fact
2. when my comrades and I were pushed to our limits (iii) felt that we could not endure the suffering any longer
3. to reassure me and keep me going (ii) help me continue to live in hope in this very difficult situation
4. the basic and honourable freedoms of…earning my keep,… (i) earning enough money to live on

Writing

I. Use the following phrases to complete the sentences given below.

  1. (i) they can be taught to love.
  2. (ii) I was born free.
  3. (iii) but the triumph over it.
  4. (iv) but he who conquers that fear.
  5. (v) to create such heights of character.

  1. 1. It requires such depths of oppression to create such heights of character.
  2. 2. Courage was not the absence of fear but the triumph over it.
  3. 3. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid but he who conquers that fear.
  4. 4. If people can learn to hate they can be taught to love.
  5. 5. I was not born with a hunger to be free. I was born free.