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January 27, 2012 in class 12th


A Brief Synopsis of the Chapter

December 1916

· Gandhi went to the December Annual Convention of the Indian National Congress party in Lucknow.
· Raj Kumar Shukla approaches Gandhi – tells Gandhi to visit Champaran.
· Gandhi heard of the place for the first time.
· He told Shukla to meet him in Calcutta after a few months.



· After months Shukla met him there again.
· Both proceeded from Calcutta towards Champaran.
· First they stopped at the house of Rajendra Prasad who was not at home.
· Shukla and Gandhi stay overnight at his place.
· Gandhi considered being an untouchable by them.
· BEFORE going to Champaran Gandhi decided to collect information about the Indigo Sharecropping.
· Decided to go to Muzzaffarpur.


· Received at the railway station by J B Kripalani along with many of his students of the Arts College in Muzzaffarpur whom Gandhi had first seen at Tagore’s Shanti Niketan School.
· Gandhi stayed at the house of Prof. Malkani.
· GANDHI’S presence in Muzzaffarpur made people think of the fact that their problems may find a solution.
· News about his arrival spreads like fire.
· Sharecroppers started coming from Champaran to see him.
· Muzafarpur lawyers called on Gandhi to brief him. Also informed him about their cases and reported the size of their fee.
· Gandhi showed his annoyance towards the lawyers & tells them that law courts are useless for them.
· Decides to make the peasants free from fear.
· Indigo sharecropping troublesome for peasants for generations.
· The farmers were exploited by the landlords in the name of sharecropping.
· When Germany developed synthetic indigo they told the peasants to pay a compensation for being released from the 15% arrangements.
· Many peasants did not agree – so the landlords started applying force and illegal methods.
· At this point Gandhi reached Champaran.
· Gandhi started working for the solution of the problem.

Started collecting facts to support the case of the peasants

· Visited the Secretary of the British landlord’s association.
· Secretary told that he could not give info to an outsider.
· Next Gandhiji visited British Official Commissioner of the Tirhut division who tried to bully him.
· Gandhiji proceeded to Motihari – the capital of Champaran – accompanied by lawyers.
· Used a house as Headquarters – continued his investigations.
· Came to know about a peasant being maltreated – Gandhi went to see him.
· Overtook by police Superintendent’s messenger – ordered Gandhi to return back.
· ((VERY IMP.)) Gandhi returned – messenger served an official notice to Gandhi to quit Champaran – Gandhi signed a receipt for the notice and wrote on it that he would disobey the order.


Triumph of the Civil Disobedience Movement

· Gandhi received summons to appear in court the next day.
· He made preparations before going to the court.
· Next morning a huge number of peasants came to Motihari and made a public appearance outside the courthouse.
· This was a beginning of their liberation from fear of the British.
· British officials felt powerless – required Gandhi’s help to control the crowd.
· The baffled/confused government wanted to postpone the trial – Gandhi did not agree to it.
· Magistrate asked Gandhi to furnish bail for 2 hrs. –Gandhi refused – the judge released him without bail.
· Gandhi made the other lawyers realize that they needed to help the poor peasants.
· Several days later, Gandhi received a written communication from the magistrate informing him that the Lieutenant Governor of the province had ordered the case to be dropped.


Gandhi starts a deeper inquiry into the case and the fact collection process.

· Collected facts and figures from about 10,000 peasants.
· June 1917 – Gandhi summoned by Sir Edward Gait, the LG.
· Gandhi made required preparations before going.
· Had 4 interviews –LG appointed an official commission of inquiry –it consisted of landlords, government officials and Gandhi as the only representative of the peasants.

Official inquiry crushed the landlords

· They agreed to pay back the refunds.
· Gandhi asked for 50% and ultimately accepted 25% with the reason that refund was less important than the fact that the landlords were made to part with their prestige.
· Peasants came to realize that landlords are not lords above the law and they learnt courage.

Gandhi not satisfied with political and economic solutions only…

· More important were cultural & social backwardness for him.
· Arranged for teachers, doctors, medicines for the people.
· Called his wife Kasturba to teach the local women

Champaran episode – turning point in Gandhi’s life.

· Decided that British could not govern him in his own land.
· A small request of an illiterate peasant made Gandhi spend almost a year in Champaran.
· Gandhi realized that an average Indian was like the poor peasants of Champaran.
· So he tried to mould a new free Indian who could stand on his own feet and thus take India forward on the path of Independence.


Rime of the Ancient Mariner

January 21, 2012 in class 10th


Line 1:
It is an Ancient Mariner

• The poem opens abruptly (suddenly) in the manner of a ballad (which can be sung) without any wasteful description.

• Our attention is immediately drawn to the central figure of the story i.e. the mariner.


Ancient Mariner :

• Ancient conveys the two fold sense of ‘old’ & of ‘old time’.
• An atmosphere of bygone days permeates throughout the whole poem.

Line 2:

• This number has mystical & supernatural associations.

Line 3 :
Long grey beard & glittering eye.

• These are two of the most striking features of the mariner’s appearance.

• Time & again in the course of the poem we are reminded of one or the other of these features.

• They lend a sense of mystery to his personality, at the same time they bring a touch of vividness to the description.

Line-3 & 4 :

• The wedding guest is irritated at being interrupted.

• He is the next of kin & his impatience is quite understandable.

• There is going to be however a change in his attitude.

• He is going to listen to the mariner with a peculiar docility ( not very much opposing).

• This change of attitude suggests how powerful is the impact of the mariner’s story.

Line – 10:
The mariner, totally unheedful of the wedding guest’s impatience, again plunges into the story abruptly. This lends another touch of weirdness to his personality.

Line – 12: Eftsoons.
• This means soon after or immediately. The archaic phraseology is used to suggest the atmosphere of the bygone days. The mariner drops the hand off the wedding guest and holds him only with the glittering eye. The fascination is now complete. The guest is not going to show any further impatience.

Line-15 & 16:
• Mark the complete change in the attitude of the wedding guest. He is now as eager & docile as a 3 year’s child.
• These 2 lines were contributed by William Wordsworth.

Line – 21:
• The story once again begins with an abruptness peculiar to it. This abruptness suggests the rapid pace of the narrator. Notice how vivid is the description of the people gathered on the coast to bid the sailors’ farewell & the sailing away of the ship.
• A critic comments, “ it is indeed a voyage from the world of reality into the world of imagination. But Coleridge’s genius has helped us to believe that the wonders that are to follow are convincing as he has used simple device of giving us a setting of actual possibility.”

Line 23 & 24:
• The objects i.e. the kirk, the hill, the lighthouse top are mentioned in the order in which they disappear from the mariner’s sight.

Line -30:
• The sun is getting more & more overhead everyday. They are approaching the equator.
Line 31 & 31:
• So far no dramatic element has entered the story. So when the wedding guest hears the sound of merry making, he is not able to control or hide his impatience.
• The magic of the glittering eye is probably losing its hold. But once the narrative will begin again, and on a more dramatic note, the listener is all attention.
• He again interrupts the mariner in line 79 but out of fear rather than impatience.

Line 41 to 44:
• The storm is personified here. As the narrative gains intensity the words used become more meaningful.

• The storm is being described as a bird of prey chasing its victim.

Line 45 to 50:
• The ship is presented as a fear stricken person fleeing from his enemy who is closely chasing him.

Line -55: Dismal Sheen.
• Sheen means brightness. But ‘dismal sheen’ suggests cheerless brightness. The mariner could not have liked the brightness of ice in that region of cold and desolate atmosphere; hence to him the brightness of ice appears to be dull & cheerless.

Line -59:
• The ice made fearful noises like an angry monster.
• A critic comments on this & the next few scenes, just as the intense cold forms so marked a contrast with the fiery heat of the coming scene to which all this is but leading, so do these fearful noises, prepare by contrast for fearful silence to follow.

• This description shrouds the albatross with mystery. He suddenly appears on the scene as if from nowhere.

Line- 63:
• In that region of dreary desolation, the albatross is the only representative of life. The words “Christian soul” at once gave him human and divine associations. He is considered to be a bird of good omen and is hailed with great joy & hospitality.

Line 50 – 70:
• A critic comments on these lines in a very interesting manner. He says “The details of the voyage are all chronicled (recorded) with such order & regularity , that there is such a diary like air about the whole thing , that we accept it almost as if it were a series of extracts from a ship’s records.”
• In these lines Coleridge makes the ship enter the polar region, the land of mist & snow , the land where huge monster like icebergs drift about making fearful noises.

Line 74:
• It is a rope reaching from the masthead to the side of the ship to which it is secured. It helped to support the masts.

Line 75: Vespers nine.
• It means evenings.
• Usually vesper is used in the sense of ‘evening prayer’.
• Nine – another mystical number like 3 which has supernatural associations.

Line 78-79:
• This interruption by the wedding-guest is definitely not out of impatience.
• He has seen a look of horror gradually appearing & deepening on the mariner’s face and he is frightened. His exclamation wrings from the mariner an avowal of his crying i.e. he seemed to be rather reluctant in confessing it for fear of the agony it would bring with it.
Line 81
• The first part of the poem concludes with a direct reference to the wanton act of shooting the albatross.
Line 88-89
• The vacuum (emptiness because it was not there) created by the death of the albatross is felt by everyone.
Line 90-95
• The other mariners emphasized the fact that the Albatross was a bird of good omen and the ancient mariner had done something very sinful by shooting it .
Line 96-101
• The fog and the mist having cleared off quite unexpected, the sun rose in its entire glorious splendour. The sailors now changed their opinion about the Albatross.
• They declared him to be a bird of ill omen and applauded the ancient mariner for having shot him. According to the critics’ comments, they thus made themselves accomplices in the crime.
• According to a critic, “the changing, variable attitude of the shipmates is noteworthy. They judge the deed and consider it good or bad, not on its merit or by any standard of right or wrong but simply by the result it brings to them and as often as those omens change, so often do they change. They not only make themselves accomplices in the crime, but they are graceless accomplices without the redeeming feature of consistency.
Line 102-105
• A very fine stanza in which the swift movement of the verse reflects the swift movement of the ship.
Line 103
• As the ship was cutting through the waves, it made a track on the surface of water. The mariner felt that the track followed the ship like a swiftly moving stream.
Line 104-105
• The ship now entered the Pacific Ocean.
• A new phase of the journey has begun. But it has been introduced without any preliminaries. The ancient mariner refers to the silent sea as if it were as known to the wedding guest as to the mariner himself.
Line 106-109
• The poet now wants to convey a touch of stillness. So in this stanza, we have a very slow rhythmic movement of the verse. According to a critic, “each line halts” and the effect created by the whole stanza is a feeling of stagnation and helplessness.
Line 110-115
• The sky is hot like burning copper. The mariner’s guilt begins to be reflected in the external nature. There is always a very close correspondence between the fate of the ship and the moves of nature.
Line 116-117
• Two very famous lines giving a perfect picture of a becalmed ship on a completely still ocean.
Line 122
• The stillness of the sea was so complete that it began to rot. A poetic exaggeration is employed to intensify the horror of the sea.
• Christ – an appeal to Christ for help and mercy. A very ironic situation, for one who so mercilessly shot the Albatross is now begging for mercy.
Line 124-125
• These are two of the most gruesome lines ever written. The full effect can be seen best and appreciated when they are read slowly. It is the repetition of words ‘slimy’ and the addition ‘with legs’ that create the extreme sense of the hideousness of the spectacle.
Line 128
• Witch’s oil – the ingredients used by the witch to prepare her broth. There is a description of such a broth in Shakespeare’s Macbeth.
Line 131
• The spirit – the avenging spirit of the South Pole, whose anger has been aroused by the shooting of Albatross.
Line 137
• Evil looks – the tongues of the sailors are dry, their throats are parched. So they cannot utter any words. They curse the mariner with their eyes.
Line 140
• Like part one, this part also concludes with a significant reference to the Albatross. The sailors, in order to fix the sole responsibilities of the sins on the mariner, hang the dead Albatross around his neck.