SECTION A - CONTEXT QUESTIONS
Read the following extracts from William Skakespeare's Hamlet and answer the question that follows
HAMLET: O vengeance!
Why, what an ass am I! This is most brave,
That I, The son of a dear father murdered,
Prompted to my revenge by heaven and hell,
Must, like a whore, unpack my heart with words,
And fall a-cursing, like a very drab,
Pie upon! Foh! - about, my brain! I have heard
That guilty creatures sitting at a play
Have by the way cunning of the scene been struck
so to the soul that presently They have proclaimed their malefactions;
For murder, though it has no tongue, will speak
with most miraculous organ. I'll have these players
Play something like the murder of my father
Before my uncle. I'll observe his looks;
I'll tent him to quick . If he but blench,
I know my course. The spirit that I have see*n
May be the devil. And the devil hath power
T'assume a pleading shape, yea, and perhaps out
of my weakness and mlancholy,
As he is very potent with such spirits,
Abuse* me to damm me . I'll have grounds
More relative* than this. - The play's the thing
Where I'll catch the conscience of the king.
- Put the italicized lines into good modern English prose. i) Have by the very cunning... to the soul (line 10-11). ii) The play's the thing...of the king (line 24-25).
- The king has just had a meeting with some important personalities before Hamlet makes this soliloquy. List the four things that are discussed withy these personalities.
- Choose one theme; explain how it is developed in on instance in this extract and in another instance else where in the play.
- Comment on the effective use of any two stylistic device in the extract.
- Imagine that you are a stage director. how would you prepare hamlet for the stage performance of this extract
Read the following poems carefully and answer the question on it.
When the epidemic of terror erupted
A lava of terror enriched the soil;
Strong hatreds spouted on whiffsof doubt
Like buds at the breath of spring.
A lamp of suspicion hung over the land
As men were denounced whose looks were disliked;
Coagulated fear and insecurity
Made stronger, yet more tenuous, ties
Than fearless confidence. As sensible bravery
Stood rooted in caution, the streets were choked
with panicked battalions of frenzied fear.
The wraith of distrust, rolling his eyes
And waving a gun, sent shot after shot
Into the ranks of Barricaded trembling;
While terror in terror found a friend.
- In 150words, say what you consider to be the meaning of the poem, bringing out clearly the central irony.
- Give the meaning in context of the following words and expressions. i)...the epidemic of terror, ii)... Whiffs, iii)...Coagulated, iv)...wraith
- Pick out and comment on the use and effectiveness of any two figurative devices.
- i) comment on the appropriateness of the poem's title, "The Epidemic". ii) What do you think is the effect of the passive voice expressions "As men were denounced whose looks were disliked" on the poem's overall meaning?
- Imagine any situation in which terror grips you and write a five-line stanza portraying your feelings.