An Elementary Classroom School in a Slum (Important Questions & Answers)
Q1. What is the condition of children studying in slum?
Ans. The condition of children studying and living in slum is very miserable. Most of them are underdeveloped and suffering from malnutrition. There is a tall girl who is unable to raise her head due to poverty whereas there is a boy who is too lean to lift his weight. He has hunger in his eyes which has been well compared to rat’s eyes.
Q2. What does the poet want for the slum children?
Ans, The poet wants proper education for the children of the slums as he thinks education is the only weapon that can change the course of anyone’s life. He wants neither money nor cash but a perfect environment for children to study.
Q3. How does the poet describe the classroom walls?
Ans. According to the poet, the walls of the school are not properly painted. Even they have a fading look which resembles sour cream walls. The poet compares the walls to the pale faces of children who are undernourished and underdeveloped.
Q4. Explain “From fog to endless nights”.
Ans. Here the poet wants to convey that these children live under pathetic conditions. Their whole day is spent in foggy slums and nights are tiresome and full of darkness. They make many futile efforts to survive in those slums. Their life is full of misery, helplessness and suffering.
Q5. Why does the poet call Shakespeare wicked?
Ans. The poet has no grudges with Shakespeare but he only want latter’s portrait from there as it has no significance in children’s lives who are studying over there. According to him, children of slum don’t get to learn anything from him.
Q6. What can inspector; governor and visitor do for the children according to poet?
Ans. The inspector, governor and visitor can bring positive changes in the lives of these children if they want, according to the poet. If they hold their responsibilities seriously, they can take these children out of their miserable condition. They can help in breaking the slums and building a new world for them.
Q7. Why the map on the wall is a bad example for children of slum?
Ans. According to the poet, the map which is big enough to speak for itself , is useless for the kids studying over there. It allures them to be thieves for running their miserable life wherein they have not seen such things that are present on the map such as ship, sun and love.
Q8. Explain “History theirs whose language Is the sun.”
Ans. Here the poet wants to convey that if these slum children are provided with the education in the free environment, they can also create the history as others do. The poet wants only them to be freed from congestion of the slum; thereupon they can also make wonders.
Q9. What is the theme of the poem ‘An elementary classroom in a slum’?
Ans. The theme of this poem is ‘Alienation’ wherein the poet criticizes the dual attitude of the people towards the slum children. Besides, it sheds light on the pathetic condition of children who are left uncared by the general public. No one is there to look after them.
Q10. Explain “So blot their maps and slums as big as doom”.
Ans. Here the poet seems to be requesting the inspector, governor and visitor to break the slums in the same way as the death and destruction does. He wants such slums to be dashed to the ground as soon as possible for the betterment of the society and children.
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