Directions: Read the following passages and answer the questions that follow.
Exercise - 1
It will be a mistake to think that he was given only ‘bouquets’, he also received many ‘brickbats’. The Christian missionaries took alarm at his popularity. They used to raise funds by preaching that India was a land of heathens waiting to be saved by Christianity. The American press now began to say that it was a shame that anybody should try to teach India religion, rather the world should sit at her feet to learn it. Vivekananda also said that India did not need religion but material support. The missionaries found that the subscriptions they had so long been receiving from the people were steadily declining. They blamed it on Swamiji. They now started denigrating him in all manner of ways. They even began to spread scandals against his personal character. Strangely enough, even some of his own countrymen joined them in these, for reasons of their own. But ‘Truth alone prevails’, as Swamiji always preached. He did not try to defend himself, but others stood up for him and vehemently protested. Finally, all such mean attempts failed and his reputation only rose higher and higher.
1. What does the passage try to teach us?
a) Not to get in religions other than our own.
b) Not to get involved in scandals.
c) Not to visit foreign lands.
d) Not to deviate from the path of truth.
2. Why was Vivekananda criticized by the Christian missionaries?
a) He was a bad student of Western theology.
b) He opposed the tenets of Christianity.
c) His influence affected the inflow of missionaries’ funds.
d) He did not allow them to raise funds in India.
3. Swami Vivekananda told the American people that India
a) did not approve of the Catholic Church.
b) would teach religion to those who sit at her feet.
c) required religious and material help.
d) was self-sufficient in religion, though poor in terms of money.
4. Vivekananda’s popularity with the American people
a) helped India get substantial aid.
b) made his friends desert him.
c) annoyed the American Government.
d) caused a drop in the Church’s collections.
5. Why did Vivekananda not defend himself?
a) He believed in the ultimate triumph of truth.
b) He was on a foreign land.
c) Some of his countrymen were opposing him.
d) He had friends who were protesting for him.
KEY 1-d; 2-c; 3-d; 4-d; 5-a.
Exercise - 2
Coal was needed in vast quantities for the Industrial Revolution. For centuries, people in Britain had to make do with charcoal if they needed a cheap and easy to acquire fuel. Whatever ‘industry’ that existed before 1700, did use coal but it came from coal mines that were near to the surface and the coal was relatively easy to get to. The Industrial Revolution changed all of this. Before the Industrial Revolution, two types of mines existed: drift mines and bell pits. Both were small scale coal mines and the coal which came from these types of pits was used locally in homes and local industry. However, as the country started to industrialise itself, more and more coal was needed to fuel steam engines and furnaces. The development of factories by Arkwright and the improvement of the steam engine by Watt further increased the demand for coal. As a result, coal mines got deeper and deeper and coal mining became more and more dangerous. Coal shafts could go hundreds of feet into the ground. Once a coal seam was found, the miners dug horizontally. However, underground, the miners faced very real and great dangers. Even with Watt’s improved steam engine, flooding was a real problem in mines. Explosive gas (called fire damp) would be found the deeper the miners got. One spark from a digging miner’s pick axe or candle could be disastrous. Poison gas was also found. Underground pit collapses were common; the sheer weight of the ground above a worked coal seam was colossal and mines were only held up by wooden beams called props. Regardless of all these dangers, there was a huge increase in the production of coal in Britain. Very little coal was found in the south, but vast amounts were found in the Midlands, the north, the north-east and parts of Scotland. Because coal was so difficult and expensive to move, towns
and other industries grew up around the coal mining areas. This in itself created problems as these towns grew without any obvious planning or thought given to the facilities that the miners and their families would need.
1. Why was charcoal used as a fuel for centuries by the British?
i) It was inexpensive and easy to get.
ii) The coal mines were near the surface.
iii) It was used in steam engines and furnaces.
a) Only i b) Only ii c) i and ii d) i, ii and iii
2. What led to the upsurge in the demand for coal?
i) Development of factories
ii) Improvement of steam engines
iii) Increase in demand by local industries
a) Only i b) Only iii c) i and ii d) i, ii and iii
3. Which among the following is not listed as a problem faced by the coal mine workers while working in the mine?
a) Fire damp b) Pit collapses
c) Splitting of seam d) Flooding
4. Which of the following statements cannot be inferred from the passage?
a) The deeper a mine, the more dangerous it is.
b) Despite being deterred by the dangers, the workforce increased which lead to the increase in production.
c) More and more coal was needed for furnaces once the country started to industrialise itself.
d) The miners and their families that settled around the coal mines faced problems due to lack of facilities.
5. Which among the following is the synonym of the word ‘colossal’?
a) Petite b) Cosmogony c) Magnificent d) Pharaonic
KEY 1-a; 2-c; 3-c; 4-b; 5-d.
Exercise - 3
Ever since the final whistle brought World Cup 2006 to a close, the atmosphere in the two neighbouring capitals could not be more different. In Rome, there were scenes of euphoria over Italy’s victory. Ecstatic Italian demonstrators partied into the early hours of the morning. The victorious team was given a rapturous welcome both at the airport and in Rome’s Circolo Massimo, where over a million fans braved the Roman sun to greet the returning heroes. The great expanse of the Circolo Massimo was strewn with red, white and green flags, while the air was thick with the crowd’s hooting, chanting and music making. Late on Monday the winning team was expected to be greeted by Prime Minister Romano Prodi. Then, a parade through the streets of Rome, with the solid gold trophy in an open top bus. In Paris, the Champs Elysees, which had seen crowds of up to 5,00,000 when France entered the quarter finals and then the semi finals, had barely 50,000 fans who felt they had to tell their team it had been heroic despite the defeat. But their heart was not in it. A special TV show organised to celebrate victory turned into a virtual wake. [Mournful faces were trying to mask a sense of overwhelming sorrow, not least because superstar Zidane’s final match had been tarnished by his expulsion from the game.] There will be no parade down the Champs Elysees as had been planned. The players had lunch with President Jacques Chirac on their return. But a tight lipped Raymond Domenech said brusquely: “I am the manager, I decide. There will be no parade.” Instead, fans had a glimpse of their favourite stars from a balcony of the chic Crillon Hotel at the Place de la Concorde. In Italy, on the other hand, the victory was experienced as a double triumph, with the feeling that Italians had avenged their Euro 2000 defeat at the hands of the French. The Italian press was lavish in its praise for the squadra azzura with headlines like “The world Belongs to Us” or simply, “Champions.” Newspapers hoped this victory would augur a new era of hope and economic recovery for Italy.
1. In the first line of the passage, which are the two capitals that the author is referring to?
a) Italy and France b) Rome and Paris
c) Melbourne and Rome d) Italy and Brazil
2. What does the word ‘tarnished’ mean in the context of the passage?
a) oxidised b) spoiled c) deteriorated d) discoloured
3. Why did the French fans gather to welcome their team despite its defeat in World Cup 2006?
a) To make the team feel that they are not alone
b) To support their team emotionally
c) To congratulate their team for being great rivals
d) To support their team for giving a tough fight
4. Which of the following is incorrect with respect to the passage?
i) Zidane was excluded from the football team before the final match got over.
ii) France mourned over a not-soglorious end of Zidane’s career.
iii) Italy has lost a match against France.
iv) Italy triumphed over France twice in World Cup 2006.
a) Only i b) ii and iv c) Only ii d) iii and iv
5. Choose the most appropriate title for the given passage:
a) The tale of the victor and the vanquished
b) A match well-avenged
c) New Champs on the block
d) World Cup 2006
KEY 1-b; 2-b; 3-d; 4-b; 5-a.
Passage - 4
Beauty is a valuable commodity in our image obsessed society, so it’s not surprising that Miss Indias and Miss Worlds make headlines. These young women aren’t just beautiful; they’re most often thin too. But Chloe Marshall, the 2008 Miss England runner-up, was size 16 (“full-figured” or “ample,” to put it politely) and therefore made even more news. A full-figured beauty pageant finalist creating a stop the-press moment highlights the fact that larger women are not usually considered “the fairest of them all.” Indeed, pick up a magazine or newspaper on any other day and the message is loud and clear – thin is in. With the average woman hovering around a size 14 or above, the comparison is odious. A recent survey revealed only six percent of women aged 18 to 64 were “very satisfied” with their looks. That leaves 94 percent of women critical of their appearance. In other words, the majority of the women sitting with you in the metro this morning woke up feeling judgmental and negative about their looks. “If every woman in the world woke up, slapped herself on the head and said: ‘I’m happy with who I am,’ entire economies would collapse,” says Jane Caro, an award-winning advertising writer. The media is often portrayed as the bogeyman in the body-image debate, but experts say it’s only part of the picture. Paxton notes women are getting messages from family from an early age. The way in which parents view their bodies impacts their children’s attitudes. “A mother who is always dieting or being critical of her body is sending a clear message to her daughters,” says Tiggemann. “That sense of body dissatisfaction is passed on.” The anti-obesity push is also unhelpful. “It’s shifted the focus away from health and onto weight and looks,” she says. “It’s perpetuating the notion that fat is bad, thin is good, and thinner is better.” And it’s a notion that has recently been proved to be untrue.
1. Which of the following statements can be inferred from the passage?
a) Thin girls are beautiful and have the potential to make headlines.
b) Anti-obesity programmes have helped in reducing obesity.
c) The author agrees that economies would collapse if all the women in the world start admiring the way they look.
d) Children have a tendency to get influenced by what they see at home.
2. Why did Chloe Marshall make headlines?
a) She was not unlike the others who believed that ‘thin is in’.
b) She was not considered ‘fairest of them all’.
c) She was not as ‘image obsessed’ as the other winners.
d) She was a ‘full figured’ 2008 Miss England runner up.
3. Which notion is being talked about in the last line of the passage?
a) Women’s obsession with a slim figure is unhealthy.
b) Fat is bad and slim is good.
c) Fat is bad and slim is good is true.
d) The anti obesity push is not helpful.
4. Which of the following is the author most likely to agree with?
A. Beauty is given great importance in today’s society.
B. Only a few women are happy the way they look.
C. Media is considered the Lilliputian character that is responsible for the body image debate.
a) A and B b) A and C c) B and C d) All follow
5. Which of the following is the synonym of the word “odious”?
a) fair b) acceptable c) inevitable d) disgusting
KEY: 1-d; 2-d; 3-b; 4-a; 5-d.
Passage - 5
People very often complain that poverty is a great evil and that it is not possible to be happy unless one has a lot of money. Actually, this is not necessarily true. Even a poor man, living in a small hut with none of the comforts and luxuries of life, may be quite content with his lot and achieve a measure of happiness. On the other hand, a very rich man, living in a palace and enjoying everything that money can buy, may still be miserable, if, for example, he does not enjoy good health or his only son has taken to evil ways. Apart from this, he may have a lot of business worries which keep him on tenterhooks most of the time. There is a limit to what money can buy and there are many things which are necessary for a man’s happiness and which money cannot procure. Real happiness is a matter of the right attitude and the capacity of being content with whatever you have is the most important ingredient of this attitude.
1. The phrase “on tenterhooks” means
a) in a state of thoughtfulness. b) in a state of anxiety.
c) in a state of sadness. d) in a state of forgetfulness.
2. It is true that
a) money alone can give happiness.
b) money always gives happiness.
c) money seldom gives happiness.
d) money alone cannot give happiness.
3. A rich man’s life may become miserable if he
a) has an evil son, bad health and business worries.
b) does not enjoy good health.
c) has business worries.
d) has business worries and his only son has taken to evil ways.
4. Which of the following is the most appropriate title to the passage?
a) Poverty, a great evil b) Money matters
c) Contentment d) The key of happiness: Money or contentment?
5. Which of the following statement is true?
a) Only a poor but contented man can be happy.
b) A poor but contented man can never be happy.
c) A poor but contented man can be happy.
d) A poor but contented man is always happy.
KEY: 1-b; 2-d; 3-a; 4-d; 5-c;
Passage - 6
It is true that the smokers cause some nuisance to the non-smokers, but this nuisance is physical while the nuisance that the non-smokers cause to the smokers is spiritual. There are, of course, a lot of non-smokers who don't try to interfere with the smokers. It is sometimes assumed that the non-smokers are morally superior, not realizing that they have missed one of the greatest pleasures of mankind. I am willing to allow that smoking is a moral weakness, but on the other hand we must beware of a man without weakness. He is not to be trusted. He is apt to be always sober and he cannot make a single mistake. His habits are too regular, his existence too mechanical and his head always maintains its supremacy over his heart. Much as I like reasonable persons, I hate completely rational beings. For that reason, I am always scared and ill at ease when I enter a house in which there are no ashtrays. The room is apt to be too clean and orderly, and the people are apt to be correct and unemotional. Now the moral and spiritual benefits of smoking have never been appreciated by these correct, righteous, unemotional and unpoetic souls. In my opinion the smokers' morality is, on the whole, higher than that of the nonsmokers. The man with a pipe in his mouth is the man after my heart. He is more genial, more open-hearted, and he is often brilliant in conversation. As Thackeray observes, "The pipe draws wisdom from the lips of the philosopher and shuts up the mouth of the foolish; it generates a style of conversation that is contemplative, thoughtful, benevolent and unaffected."
1. What kind of hardship does a non-smoker cause to a smoker?
a) Non-smokers torment smokers spiritually.
b) Non-smokers feel the smokers are people with no morals.
c) There is no ashtray in a non-smoker's house and thus a smoker can't smoke at a non-smoker's place.
d) Non-smokers keep pestering smokers to quit smoking.
2. Why according to the author is it wrong to think that a non-smoker is morally superior to a smoker?
a) because non-smokers are missing one of the greatest pleasures of mankind.
b) because smoking doesn't concern any morality.
c) because a smoker is more open hearted and genuine as a person.
d) None of these
3. A man without any moral weakness is untrustworthy because
a) his existence is too mechanical and he thinks more with his brain than with his heart.
b) treachery is expected from an immoral person; it's a moral person we have to watch out for.
c) he never makes a mistake himself and disdains people who make mistakes.
d) he is too prejudiced.
4. Why is the author scared to enter a place where there are no ashtrays?
a) He wouldn't find a place to drop cigarette ash in.
b) He wouldn't find company to smoke with.
c) He is scared of non-smokers.
d) He is scared of the absolute rationality of non-smokers.
5. "The pipe draws wisdom from the lips of the philosopher and shuts up the mouth of the foolish; it generates a style of conversation that is contemplative, thoughtful, benevolent and unaffected." This means:
a) Smoking is good for wise people and bad for foolish people.
b) All smokers are brilliant at conversations. They are thoughtful, contemplative, benevolent and unaffected.
c) It is good that some fools smoke, because then they can't speak and we are spared their prattle.
d) None of these
KEY: 1-a; 2-c; 3-a; 4-d; 5-d.