BSEB Class 12 English Rainbow Book Chapter 4 I have a Dream Summary, Explanation, Question Answers from Rainbow Book
I have a Dream– BSEB Class 12 English Rainbow Book Chapter 4 I have a Dream Summary and detailed explanation of the story along with meanings of difficult words. Also, the summary is followed by an explanation of the lesson. All the exercises and Question Answers given at the back of the lesson have also been solved.
- I have a Dream Summary
- I have a Dream Video Explanation
- I have a Dream Lesson Explanation
- I have a Dream Question Answers
BSEB Class 12 English Rainbow book Chapter 4 – I have a Dream
By – Martin Luther King, Jr.
I have a Dream Introduction
‘I have a Dream’ is a speech that Martin delivered on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC on August 28, 1963. Here he speaks about his dream of seeing Alabama as a developed state, free of racial distinction between the whites and the blacks. The speech had a huge impact in raising public consciousness for the civil rights movement and in establishing King as one of the greatest orators in American history.
Video Explanation of I have a Dream
I have a Dream Summary
In his speech, King appreciates former US President Abraham Lincoln for having signed the Emancipation Proclamation, an executive order changing the legal status of slaves to ‘free’. Even though it came as a ray of hope for the Black community, but even hundred years later, they still have to face widespread discrimination and injustice. They do not have the opportunities their fellow White Americans have. One can be obvious that America has failed to deliver its promise to them but the author refuses to believe that his nation’s ‘bank of justice’ is bankrupt just yet. He reminds his audience that they have gathered to alarm the nation of the urgency of the situation to remove all injustices. He asks his listeners to not lose their morale by resorting to violence in their quest for freedom. They must not distrust all white people because many of them have proved their loyalty by being present in their support. He urges everyone to always look forward and never look back. He claims to not be satisfied till they transform Negro’s small ghetto to a larger one and till they get the basic right to vote. He highlights how his people had to face trials and tribulations whenever they tried to raise their voice against the unjust practices of the people or the government. He confesses to his audience that despite the frustrations of the situation, he still sees a dream. He dreamed that one day his nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its system of belief and hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal. He dreamed that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and those of slave owners will share a table of brotherhood. He pondered that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, burning with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. He wanted his all four children to one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin but for the humans they are. He dreamed of a situation where little boys and girls will be able to join hands with each other and walk together as sisters and brothers despite the colour of their skin. These are the dreams that he hopes to fulfill for the nation and the faith in its possibility is something he will take with him to the South. He says that it is possible only through this faith that they can come out of the “mountain” of hopelessness into a “stone” of belief. This belief can lead everyone to see each other as equals and understand that no one is better than the other thereby leading to a harmonious arrangement. This faith will bring unity and everyone will have the same opportunities where they will be able to work, pray, struggle, suffer and fight together towards independence. King says that his dreams will come true because America is a great nation. He urges Americans to let freedom ring on all of the gorgeous terrains of America. He aligned his movement with patriotism, suggesting that the full beauty of America will be realized only once the movement’s goals are met. He acknowledged the difficulty of this path to freedom and emphasizes that the end result will be worthwhile. Lastly, he repeats “Let freedom ring” in reference to various places around the country, uniting those listening to a common goal and reminding the audience of his desire to have all of God’s children (irrespective of race, color, creed or religion) stand and “join hands and sing.” The final line comes from “the old Negro spiritual” that encompasses the passion of the Civil Rights movement: “Free at last. Free at last. Thank God Almighty, we are free at last.”
I have a Dream Lesson Explanation
- Passage – Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of captivity.
Five score years ago- 1 score = 20 years, so 5 score years = 100 years
Emancipation Proclamation- an executive order issued by the US President Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War that ordered the freeing of enslaved people in Confederate states not yet captured by Union forces (Northern states (the Union) believed in a unitary country, free from slavery and based on equal rights; conversely, Southern states (the Confederates) did not want to abolish slavery)
Symbolic– representing something else
Momentous- of great importance or significance, especially in having a bearing on future events, significant
Decree- an official order that has the force of law, pronouncement
Beacon light – a tower with a light that gives warning of shoals (of fish) to passing ships
Negro- a word that is used in the past to refer to someone with dark skin who comes from Africa or whose ancestors came from Africa
Withering- devastating; humiliating
Injustice- lack of fairness or justice
Daybreak- the time in the morning when daylight first appears; dawn
Captivity- the condition of being imprisoned or confined
Explanation of the Above Passage – In the beginning of his speech, Martin Luther King, Jr. praises the greatness of Abraham Lincoln (16th President of the United States) for signing the Emancipation Proclamation, an executive order changing the legal status of slaves to ‘free’. He says that they are living in Lincoln’s “Symbolic shadow” – it is a metaphor meaning that their lives have been greatly affected by the beliefs and deeds of this great American – particularly the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, that happened a hundred years ago. This historic regulation gave hope to millions of people with color who have been forced into slavery. It uplifted them when they were totally worn out in their total and devastating fight for justice. The moment was so huge that it acted as a ray of light from the sunrise that ended the darkness of night which is felt in a confined prison.
- Passage– But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material-prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. So we have come here today to dramatize an appalling condition.
Tragic– causing or characterized by extreme distress or sorrow
Crippled- severely damaged or malfunctioning
Manacles- handcuffs, restricting freedom
Segregation- the act of isolating people according to race, religion and sex
Discrimination- unfair treatment to a person or group
Lonely island- isolated, without companions
Prosperity- the state of being prosperous, successful and having a lot of money
Languishing- to fail to be successful or improve
Exile- deportee; refugee
Dramatize- exaggerate the seriousness or importance of (an incident or situation)
Appalling- causing shock or dismay; shocking
Explanation of the Above Passage – Even after a hundred years of signing the official regulation, the blacks are still not liberated. Their lives are severely damaged and they are still made to feel isolated and are treated badly. White Americans are succeeding all around the world while on the other hand, the minority of Black people still do not have the basic equal rights. They continue to live in poverty in the corners of American society where they are treated as refugees, despite living in their own country. Hence, he points out that they have gathered to discuss and highlight the seriousness of this horrifying situation.
- Passage – It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of colour are concerned. Instead of honouring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad cheque which has come back marked ‘insufficient funds’. But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of the nation. So we have come to cash this cheque — a cheque that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.
Defaulted- fail to fulfill an obligation, especially to repay a loan or to appear in law of court (that you legally have to do)
Promissory note– a signed note containing a written promise to pay a stated sum to a specified person or the bearer at a specified date or on demand
Insofar- to the extent that
Sacred- considered to be holy and deserving respect
Obligation- an act or course of action to which a person is morally or legally bound; a duty or commitment
Vaults- a large room or chamber used for storage, especially an underground one
Hallowed- made holy
Fierce- having or displaying an intense or ferocious aggressiveness
Urgency- importance requiring swift action
Tranquilizing- to make someone become calm, sleepy or unconscious by means of a drug
Gradualism- a policy of gradual reform rather than sudden change or revolution
Desolate- (of a place) uninhabited and giving an impression of bleak emptiness
Quicksands- loose wet sand that yields easily to pressure and sucks in anything resting on or falling into it
Brotherhood- an association of community of people linked by a common interest, religion, or trade
Explanation of the Above Passage – The speaker highlights the obvious by stating that America has definitely failed to fulfill this legal obligation that came with the promissory note. This note was a promise that all black men and women would be guaranteed equal rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Instead of the promissory note, they got a bad cheque from America which upon withdrawal, resulted in “insufficient funds” in terms of fair resources for people of color. Despite the bad cheque, people of the black community have not lost hope in attaining justice for themselves because they do not believe that the “bank of justice” is bankrupt just yet. The writer is comparing the rights of Black people to a cheque. Just like a cheque gets returned due to lack of funds, similarly the proclamation also failed because it has not got them the promised equal rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. In the hearts of hearts, they know that there are opportunities for them also which is why they have come together to encash the cheque by demanding the luxury of freedom, security and fairness in treatment. They have gathered at the honored spot to refresh America’s memory regarding the emergency of their current situation. The speaker mentions that they are left with no time to work towards gradual reforms and instead, they should work towards coming out of the dark and isolated valley of racial discrimination to make their way to the path of justice, illuminated with sunlight. He motivates the audience by saying that they should not stay stuck in the quicksand but instead, should rise to brotherhood, which is rock-solid.
- Passage – It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of the Negro. This sweltering summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. Negro is grated his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.
Fatal– leading to failure or disaster
Sweltering- uncomfortably hot
Legitimate- to give legal status or authorization to
Discontent- dissatisfaction with one’s circumstances; lack of contentment
Invigorating- making one feel strong, healthy and full of energy
Blow off steam– get rid of pent-up energy or strong emotion
Business as usual- an ongoing and unchanging state of affairs despite difficulties or disturbances
Grated- to reduce to shreds, fragments or powder by rubbing against an abrasive surface
Whirlwinds- a column of air moving rapidly round and round in a cylindrical or funnel shape
Revolt- take violent action against an established government or ruler; rebel
Explanation of the Above Passage –If the nation still fails to understand the emergency of the situation and undervalue the firmness of their purpose, then it would prove to be disastrous. The black community’s dissatisfaction with their legal status has been described as summer days that are extremely hot and uncomfortable and the temperature will not go down unless they experience freedom and equality. The experience of justice has been described as feeling strong, healthy and full of energy like one does in the autumn season. Luther further says that the year 1963 is not the end but just the beginning of their fight for justice. He says that people are mistaken if they think that the black community just needed to vent their emotions and now they will get silent, but if people go back to normal state of affairs as if nothing happened, then they are up for a shocking surprise. Black men have been robbed of their basic rights and privileges for many years now and the hurricane of revolt will jerk the national institution till they attain justice for themselves.
- Passage – But, there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.
Threshold- a strip of wood or stone forming the bottom of a doorway and crossed in entering a house or room
Deeds- an action that is performed intentionally or consciously
Bitterness- anger and disappointment at being treated unfairly; resentment
Hatred- intense dislike; hate
Explanation of the Above Passage –He addresses the audience as ‘my people’ and describes that they are standing on the “Warm threshold” that is a welcoming entrance, just before entering the “palace of justice”. Hence, it is a warm, comforting, long-awaiting place where they are located just before they reach their final destination. He asks his people to not resort to wrongful acts to reach the right place. He urges them to not fulfill their craving for justice by acting out of anger.
- Passage – We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvellous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to distrust all white people, for many of our white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny and their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone.
High plane- being more spiritual and less concerned with ordinary things
Creative protest– a way to express your feelings to help the community around you without violence
Degenerate- to pass from a higher to a lower type or condition
Majestic- having or showing impressive beauty or scale
Marvellous- extremely good or pleasing; splendid
Militancy- the fact of using, or being willing to use, force or strong pressure to achieve your aims, especially to achieve social or political change
Engulfed- powerfully affect (someone); overwhelm
Inextricably- in a way that is impossible to disentangle or separate; closely
Explanation of the Above Passage –He inspires the audience to always choose the high road and act with honor, respect and direction. They must not let their ‘creative protest’ degrade by resorting to acts of violence. They must reach heights that are beautiful but it should be done by “meeting physical force with soul force” or in other words, methods of civil disobedience (peaceful form of political protest) and non-violent protest. The excellent fire within people to win justice for themselves must not lead them to lack trust on all White men and women because many of them are in their support which has been made evident by their presence in their crowd. They are one of those white people who have understood that their destinies are together and their freedom goes hand-in-hand. Hence, they can not win this fight alone.
- Passage – And as we walk, we make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, ‘When will you be satisfied?’ We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.
Pledge- a solemn promise or undertaking
Devotees- a person who is very interested in and enthusiastic about someone or something
Civil rights– the rights of citizens to political and social freedom and equality
Fatigue- extreme tiredness resulting from mental or physical exertion or illness
Lodging- temporary accommodation
Motels- a roadside hotel designed primarily for motorists, typically having the rooms arranged in low blocks with parking directly outside
Mobility- the ability to move between different levels in society or employment
Ghetto- slum area densely populated by an isolated community
Righteousness- the quality of being morally right or justifiable
Explanation of the Above Passage – In their path, they must make a promise to themselves to never turn back and always look forward. People often ask the civil right enthusiasts when they are going to be satisfied. The truth is, they will never be satisfied till their bodies, tired due to all the traveling, are unable to get into any highway motels and city hotels. Their thirst for equality will not be satiated till the black community shifts from an isolated slum area to a better and bigger locality. They will not be content till each eligible person of the black community gets the right to vote. They will not be satisfied till justice rolls down like “water” and morality like a “mighty stream”. Dr. King used the King James phrase “as a mighty stream” but he doesn’t mean “mighty,” it means everlasting. In contrast to most of the rivers in Israel that are dry in the summer and run with water only in the winter rainy season, righteousness is to be “an ever-flowing stream”
- Passage – I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.
Unmindful– not conscious or aware
Trials- a formal examination of evidence by a judge, typically before a jury, in order to decide guilt in a case of criminal or civil proceedings
Tribulations- a cause of great trouble or suffering
Quest- a long search for something
Battered- worn out, crushed, whacked
Persecution- hostility and ill-treatment, especially because of race or political or religious beliefs; oppression
Staggered- reeling, dropped, fallen
Police brutality– Police brutality is an offense which is a violation of civil rights of an individual. The brutality done by the police occurs when a police officer acts with excessive force by using more force towards a civilian or public or an individual which is not necessary.
Veterans- a person who has had long experience in a particular field
Unearned- not earned or deserved
Redemptive- giving salvation, releasing
Explanation of the Above Passage –Luther assures his people that he has not forgotten that some of them have experienced trials, and trouble and were even locked up. He is well aware that some of his people have come from places where their fight for freedom has left them worn out as a result of all the ill-treatment and police brutality. They have a long experience of ‘creative suffering’. It means that there were many different ways in which African- Americans suffered in order to achieve their own rights and their own guarantees under the Constitution. Luther further asks them to not lose faith in the fact that the pain they didn’t deserve will backfire onto those who caused the pain and will serve to make amends from the victim to the harmer.
- Passage – Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.
Wallow– to spend time experiencing something without making any effort to change your situation, feelings, etc
Explanation of the Above Passage –People often ask them to go back to Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and the slums and ghettos of North America. He has emphasized on the words “Go back” because people of America are not ready to accept them as citizens of their nation even after knowing well that one day this situation will change and justice will prevail. He asks his listeners to not spend too much time feeling the negative emotions of hopelessness.
- Passage – I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
Explanation of the Above Passage –Despite many hardships, he confessed that he still has a dream which is embedded in the American dream. By American dream, he meant an America in which all people, regardless of color, have the same opportunities. He wanted justice for all.
- Passage – I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed. ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal.’
Creed– a system of religious belief; a faith
Explanation of the Above Passage –King dreams of the day America will become capable enough to live its belief. The “self-evident truth” of human equality means that humans had equal natural rights, equally gave their consent to create a republican government, had equal dignity, and were equal under the law.
- Passage – I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood.
- I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
Sweltering– hot and perspiring
Oasis- a fertile or green area in an arid region (such as a desert); refuge; haven or safe place
Explanation of the Above Passage –King dreams to see the day when previous slaves and their owners will sit on the same table in union on the red hills of Georgia. He also ponders about the day when the desert state of Mississippi will turn into an oasis. He describes the desert state “sweltering with heat” to emphasize on how Black Americans have spent centuries suffering through the “heat” of racism. He wants it to turn into an oasis where there is independence and equality.
- I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin but by the content of their character.
- I have a dream today.
- I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor’s lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers.
Interposition– to come between things; an intervening position
Nullification- the action of attempting to prevent the operations and enforcement within its territory of a law of the US
Explanation of the Above Passage –He fantasizes about the day his four children will be known for their capabilities and qualities instead of the color of their skin. He thinks about the day when Alabama’s state will allow little boys and girls to go hand in hand with each other despite their color. He dreams this for the same Alabama whose state governor who is currently busy in interfering in and cancelling everything.
- I have a dream today.
- I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough paces will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
Exalted– in a state of extreme happiness
Crooked- bent or twisted out of shape or out of place
Glory- magnificence or great beauty
(Para 18 – These specific lines are a reference to Isaiah 40:4, a verse in the Holy Bible.)
Explanation of the Above Passage –King thinks about the day when the quiet and the patient will be lifted up, the proud brought low, the wrong paths set right, rough natures smoothened, that is the true preparation for the coming of the Lord, and therefore, the true work of every follower in preparing the way will be visible.
- Passage – This is our hope. This is the faith with which I return to the South. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.
Hew– chop or cut with an ax/, pick, or other tool
Despair- the complete loss or absence of hope
Jangling- harsh or unpleasant sound
Discords- disagreement between people
Symphony- a usually long musical composition for a full orchestra
Explanation of the Above Passage –These are the dreams that he hopes to fulfill for the nation and the faith in its possibility is something he will take with him to the South. He says that it is possible only through this faith that they can come out of the “mountain” of hopelessness into a “stone” of belief. This belief can change the “jangling discords” to a “symphony of brotherhood”. By “jangling discords”, he meant that the differences between the Blacks and Whites which have caused many noisy protests will end and someday they willsee each other as equals and that no one is better than the other leading to a harmonious arrangement (symphony of brotherhood). This faith will bring unity and everyone will have same opportunities where they will be able to work, pray, struggle, suffer and fight together towards independence.
- This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with a new meaning, ‘My country ’tis of thee sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the Pilgrim’s pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring.’
‘Tis– it is
Pilgrim- a person who journeys to a sacred place for religious reasons
Explanation of the Above Passage –According to Luther, when the whole of the country will be one and all of its people will be treated equally, that will be the day when God’s children will sing the National Anthem with a renewed meaning. He sings the lines of the song that throws light upon the independent nation who has attained freedom at the cost of its fathers. It is a land of every Pilgrim’s pride and where freedom will echo from each side of the mountain.
- And if America is to be a great nation this must come true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania!
- Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado!
- Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California!
Prodigious– very great in size
Curvaceous- having an attractively curved shape
Explanation of the Above Passage –King says that his dreams will come true because America is a great nation. He urged Americans to let freedom ring from the great hilltops of New Hampshire, mountains of New York and the Alleghenies of Pennsylvania. He wants the roar of freedom to be heard in snow-covered Rockies of Colorado and curved peaks of California. King’s imagery of mountains both acknowledges the difficulty of this path to freedom and emphasizes that the end result will be worthwhile—after all, his language surrounding mountains is overwhelmingly positive, calling them “mighty” and “prodigious” and referring, in another context, to “majestic heights.”
- But not only that; Let freedom ring from the Stone Mountain of Georgia!
- Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee!
- Let freedom ring from every hill and every molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.
Molehill– a small mound of earth thrown up by a mole burrowing near the surface
Explanation of the Above Passage –He wants freedom to make its noise in the Stone Mountain of Georgia, Lookout Mountain of Tennesse, each hill and molehill in Mississippi and every mountainside. By specifying the gorgeous terrain of America (just as the song does), King aligns his movement with patriotism, suggesting that the full beauty of America will be realized only once the movement’s goals are met.
- When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children – black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics – will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, ‘Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!’
Hamlet– a very small village
Jews- everybody will someday see each others as equals and that no one is better than the other.
Gentiles- a person who is not Jewish
Protestants- everybody will someday see each other as equals and that no one is better than the other.
Catholics- everybody will someday see each other as equals and that no one is better than the other.
Explanation of the Above Passage – He repeats “Let freedom ring” in reference to various places around the country, uniting those listening to a common goal and reminding the audience of his desire to have all of God’s children (irrespective of race, color, creed or religion) stand and “join hands and sing.” The final line comes from “the old Negro spiritual” that encompasses the passion of the Civil Rights movement: “Free at last. Free at last. Thank God Almighty, we are free at last.”
I have a Dream Question Answers
A. Work in small groups and discuss the following:
1 Evils of caste system
The caste system is one of the greatest social evils plaguing India today. It is acting as a powerful hindrance in our path towards development. Practices of untouchability, discrimination, division of labor and slavery are the main evil faces of the system. Casteism limits social interaction among groups. It rips off the access to education to various groups thereby reducing job opportunities for them which directly affects the standard of living of the individual and also the economy, at large.
Nevertheless, it cannot be denied that some changes are taking place particularly among
the educated mass who do realize that Casteism is an inhuman practice. There is a
tendency to break the barriers. For instance, there have been cases of inter-caste
marriages, dining together in public places, visiting temples and some limited entry into
the houses of the so-called upper caste Hindus. But still, it is a curse on our country that must be eradicated at all costs if we wish to progress.
2 Bihar of your dream
In the Bihar of my dreams, there would be happiness and prosperity all over where no one would go to bed hungry. All of its people would have access to basic amenities. Every child would have access to quality education. Research and Development would be carried out in fields of science and technology. The state would strive to be self-sufficient in the health sector with each individual having access to good doctors, hospitals and treatment. There would be social justice. The gap between the rich and the poor would be narrowed down. Political stability would prevail. The Bihar of my dreams would be a beautiful sight for the tourists to visit.
B.1. Read the following sentences and write T for true and F for false statements:
a) The hopes of the Negro population were fulfilled by the signing of the emancipation Proclamation.
b) The condition of the Negroes was appalling.
c) The ‘bank of justice’ is bankrupt.
d) The author prefers racial discrimination.
e) The nation could overlook Negro problems.
f) The Negroes of America had citizenship rights.
g) The author hates the white Americans.
h) He advocates non-violent struggle.
a) The hopes of the Negro population were fulfilled by the signing of the emancipation Proclamation. – True
b) The condition of the Negroes was appalling. – True
c) The ‘bank of justice’ is bankrupt. – True
d) The author prefers racial discrimination.– False
e) The nation could overlook Negro problems.– False
f) The Negroes of America had citizenship rights.– False
g) The author hates the white Americans.– False
h) He advocates non-violent struggle. – True
B.2. Answer the following questions briefly :
- What is the author trying to achieve through his speech?
In his speech, King is trying to bring to light the injustice prevailing in his nation where the Black community has been segregated and isolated. He is inspiring his people to not lose hope in their fight towards freedom and justice.
- Do you think Martin Luther is a great orator? What, according to you, are qualities of a great orator? What does Martin Luther urge his people to do?
Yes, I think that Martin Luther King is a great orator. According to me, a great orator should have confidence and proper knowledge on the subject which clearly, King has. A good orator must be well-aware about his motives and he should be able to connect with his audience. In my opinion, no one knows the struggle of slavery and the fight for freedom better than him.
In his speech, he urged his people to fight for justice and freedom. He asked them to have faith that they will attain equality for themselves through civil disobedience and non-violence.
- What is their pledge?
Their pledge is that they shall always march ahead and never turn back. They can never be satisfied until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.
- What are the ‘trials and tribulations’ the author talks about?
The ‘trials and tribulations’ the author talks about refers to the hardships and sufferings of the innocent black people who had to face it for raising their voice against the discrimination and injustice.
B.3. Answer the following questions briefly :
1) ‘This is our hope’ (Paragraph 19). What is the hope?
The author is hopeful that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough paces will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
2) If America is to be a great nation, what must become true?
If America is to be a great nation, it must fight for equality till the day everyone has the same opportunities where they will be able to work, pray, struggle, suffer and fight together towards independence. It will have to treat one another as equals and that no one is better than the other, leading to a symphony of brotherhood.
3) Why and when will they thank the Almighty?
They will thank the Almighty when the roar of justice will echo in every American terrain. The motive was to unite those working towards a common goal and remind the audience of his desire to have all of God’s children irrespective of race, color, creed or religion, stand and join hands to sing. The final line of his speech comes from “the old Negro spiritual” that encompasses the passion of the Civil Rights movement: “Free at last. Free at last. Thank God Almighty, we are free at last.”
C. 1. Long Answer Questions
- ‘The life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination.’ Elaborate.
One hundred years after signing the Emancipation Proclamation, it is a tragic fact that the Negro is still not free. They are still not liberated. The Negro still lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material-prosperity. They are still languishing in the corners of American society and find themselves an exile in their own land. They do not enjoy the basic voting rights like other Ameircans. They are robbed of many opportunities that their fellow White citizens have. They face trials and tribulations on raising their voice against injustice. Hence, “the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and chains of discrimination” in many ways.
- What would be fatal for the nation? Why? Explain.
The black community strives to fight for the riches of freedom and the security of justice which is why they gathered at the hallowed spot to remind America about the emergency of their current situation. However, if the nation still fails to understand the urgency of the situation and undervalue the firmness of their purpose, then it would prove to be disastrous. This sweltering summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. The black community did not just want to vent their emotions and get silent, but if people go back to normal state of affairs as if nothing happened, then they are up for a shocking surprise. Black men have been robbed of their basic rights and privileges for many years now and the hurricane of revolt will jerk the national institution till they attain justice for themselves. Hence, It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of the Negro.
- What was the ‘dream’? How many times ‘I have a dream’ appears in the lesson? Discuss the importance of this repetition.
Martin Luther King, Jr. dreamed that one day his nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed and hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal. He dreamed that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. He pondered that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. He wanted his all four children to one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin but by the content of their character. He dreamed of a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers.
He aspired that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough paces will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
The phrase “I have a dream has been repeated eight times in the lesson. The orator wants to awaken the sense of revolt in his listeners to work towards fulfilling the dream. Hence, he has used repetition of the phrase as a medium to emphasize on the urgency and importance of the situation.
- What is the pledge? When will it be fulfilled?
As they walked on the path of justice, they made a pledge that they shall always march ahead and never turn back. They can never be satisfied as long as their bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. They cannot be pleased as long as the Negro’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. They will not sit silently as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. They will not be satisfied till justice rolls down like water and morality like a mighty stream. Dr. King used the King James phrase “as a mighty stream” but he doesn’t mean “mighty,” it means everlasting. In contrast to most of the rivers in Israel that are dry in the summer and run with water only in the winter rainy season, righteousness is to be “an ever-flowing stream”
- Do you have a dream for your state? Narrate your dream in your own words.
Yes, I have a dream for my state. My vision is to have a self-sufficient state in the health sector which is always ready to cater to unpredictable health crises. As witnessed during the second wave of Covid-19, there were not enough hospital beds, ventilators, ambulances and oxygen cylinders to fulfill the excessive demand of the alarming situation which led to loss of life at an unbelievable rate. Hence, Delhi being the capital city of our country must have ample resources for any emergency situations like these. Apart from availability of resources, there must be proper courses of action to put damage-control into place.
D. WORD STUDY
D.1. Dictionary Use
Ex. 1. Correct the spelling of the following words:
|Opportunity- opportunity||Begining- Beginning||Hatered- Hatred|
|Prodegeons- prodigious||Curvacous- Curvaceous||Antem- Anthem|
Ex. 2. Look up a dictionary and write two meanings of each of the following words — the one in which it is used in the lesson and the other which is more common:
As per lesson- deportee, refugee
Other meaning- ban
As per lesson- an official order that has the force of law, pronouncement
Other meaning- judgement; opinion
As per lesson- a small, narrow river
Other meaning- transmit or receive (data, especially video and audio material) over the internet as a steady, continuous flow.
As per lesson- the complete loss or absence of hope
Other meaning- distress
As per lesson- make a clear resonant or vibrating sound
Other meaning- a small circular band, typically of precious metal and often set with one or more gemstones, worn on a finger as an ornament or a token of marriage, engagement, or authority
Read the following sentences carefully:
I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations.
In the sentence given above the word ‘unmindful’ is derived from ‘mind’ adding a prefix ‘un-‘ and a suffix ‘-ful’. Find out the root words and the prefixes/suffixes added to in the following words:
Ex. 1. Match the words given in Column A with their meanings in Column B
|Column A||Column B|
|legitimate||compensating for the faults|
|inextricably||in accordance with law|
|staggered||small pile of earth|
|molehill||the point just before a new situation|
|jangling||walk or move unsteadily|
|Column A||Column B|
|legitimate||in accordance with law|
|threshold||the point just before a new situation|
|staggered||walk or move unsteadily|
|molehill||small pile of earth|
|emancipation||compensating for the faults|
D. 4. Phrases
Ex.1. Read the lesson carefully and find out the sentences in which the following phrases have been used. Use these phrases in sentences of your own:
|So far as||cooling off||seek to||instead of|
|blow off||bound to||stand up for||quest for|
So far as- The play was a great success so far as attendance was concerned
Cooling off- We can’t discuss it until you’ve cooled off.
Seek to- they came here to seek shelter from biting winter winds
Instead of- We ordered coffee instead of ordering tea this time
Blow off- I took the car in and told them about the problem and they just blew me off
Bound to- You are legally bound to fulfill this obligation.
Stand up for- We must stand up for what we believe in
Quest for- In her quest for self-discovery, she mastered mindfulness.
Ex.1. Put the correct form of verbs given in the brackets given and complete the sentences:
a) The Negro still……….himself an exile in his own country. (find)
b) People…………to realise the plight of the Negroes. (come)
c) We will not…………until justice is done. (satisfy)
d) Let freedom………..from the mighty mountains of New York. (ring)
e) Martin Luther…………..America proud. (do)
a) The Negro still finds himself an exile in his own country.
b) People have come to realise the plight of the Negroes.
c) We will not be satisfied until justice is done.
d) Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York.
e) Martin Luther did make America proud.