Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 1st 2015 Contents Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, June 1, 2015
21. What does "Mother's" language reveal about her?
A. She has a chequered past
B. She is a decent woman
C. She has lofty ideas
D. She is a simple woman
22. In (line 2) the words "ain't been no" is an example of a
C. Double Negative
23. "The stair" to which the poet refers in (lines 2 & 20) is a
A. Metaphor for life
B. Simile for life
C. Metaphor for hope
For I'se still goin', honey,
I'se still climbin',
And life for me ain't been no crystal stair 20
By Langston Hughes
DIRECTIONS: Read the passage carefully before attempting the questions. Each question has four options, select the most appro-
priate answer, based on what is contained or implied in the passage. in the poem.
The World's Oldest Inhabitants?
The word "aboriginal" means "the first" or "earliest known". The
word was first used in Italy and Greece to describe people who
lived there, natives or old inhabitants, not newcomers, or invaders.
Australia may well be the home of the world's first people. Stone
tools discovered in a quarry near Penrith, New South Wales, in
1971 show that humans lived in Australia at least twelve thou-
sand years before they appeared in Europe.
To put this in perspective, so that we can appreciate the time
scales, since the first fleet arrived in 1788 there have only been 8
generations of settlers. On the other hand, there have been in ex-
cess of 18,500 generations of aboriginals!!!
Aborigines And Their Culture
More than 30,000 years ago the population of the world was
small, and people lived in family groups, hunting, fishing and food
gathering. There were no cultivated crops, animals were not
herded for food and metalworking was yet to be discovered.
At that time, known as the last great Ice Age, Australia was joined
to New Guinea. Islands such as Java and Borneo were larger than
today, sea passages between them narrower. This made it possi-
ble for the ancestors of the people now called Australian Aborig-
inals to reach Australia from lands to the north.
Land, The Ultimate Provider
Each clan grouping occupied a well-defined area of land, their
"clan" territory with which they had close and dependent rela-
tionship. The group belonged with, or to, the land - like the animals
and plants of the area; man was an integral part of a relatively
unchanging environment. They had no concept of being able to
buy or sell land; the land was given long ago in the Dreamtime.
Land was not something to be bartered, and the future of the
group was tied closely with the continued ability of the land to
provide food for gathering, animals to kill, and fresh water.
Aborigines were limited to the range of foods occurring naturally
in their area, but they knew exactly when, where and how to find
everything edible. But food was not obtained without effort. In
some areas both men and women had to spend from half to two
thirds of each day hunting or foraging for food.
Inland, the quest for water was a life and death matter. Aborigines
survived where others would perish. They knew where the water
holes and soaks were in their area. They drained dew, and ob-
tained water from certain trees and roots. They even dug up and
squeezed out frogs, which store water in their bodies.
Within the clan grouping, all speaking the same language, or the
same dialect, small bands of families carried out their daily living
as a group. They moved around their clan country, from place to
place, depending on the season and the availability of food. In
coastal areas, and the more fertile parts of the continent, groups
were relatively static, because food was readily obtainable, but in
the desert areas vast tracts of land could support only a few peo-
ple, and these had to travel long distances in their endless quest
The necessity to be mobile meant that Aboriginals could afford
only those possessions that were essential to their way of life.
Many belongings were multipurpose - like the coolamon, a curved
wooden dish, which was used to dig, to carry water or the baby;
to toss seeds or collect the plant food gathered daily by the
Often, the men carried only a spear thrower, spears, and those
weapons needed to procure the animals native to his territory.
The women carried the rest - babies, household utensils - to leave
the men free to use the weapons.
Full use was made of natural resources to produce whatever pos-
sessions were needed. String, cord and hair were woven into nets,
baskets, mats and fishing lines. Wood and bark were used to
make dishes, shields, spears, and boomerangs, to make dugout
canoes, and other types of watercraft, such as rafts. Stone was
chipped to form tools that could be used as weapons, or to cut
and carve wood. Large pebbles and flat stones were used to grind
seeds to flour. Pieces of bone were sharpened into spear points,
and even used as needles to sew together skin for cloaks and
rugs. Skins of animals were treated to carry water, and in some
places human skulls were used for the same purpose.
Clubs, nets, snare and spears were used to catch different types
of animals and birds. Large animals were speared or clubbed,
smaller ones caught in pits and nets. Fish were speared, or caught
with traps, and sometimes water was poisoned with plant juices.
The foot tracks of animals - and of every member of the group -
were recognised. After years of training, the Aboriginals devel-
oped extraordinary skills in tracking their prey, by following broken
twigs, or by very faint markings, even on hard ground.
Many ingenious devices were used to get within striking distance
of prey. The men approached their prey running where there was
cover, or "freezing" and crawling in the open. They were careful
to stay downwind, and sometimes covered themselves with mud
to disguise their smell.
Mud also served as camouflage, or the hunter held a bush in front
of him while stalking in the open. He glided through the water
with a bunch of rushes or a lily-leaf over his head until he was
close enough to pull down a waterbird. He prepared "hides" and,
with bait or birdcalls, lured birds to within grabbing distance. He
attracted emus, which are inquisitive birds, by imitating their
movements with a stick and a bunch of feathers or some other
Continued on the next page
24. How would you describe "Mother's" life?
25. What word BEST depicts the poet's existence?
26. What does the poem reveal about "Mother's" character?
A. She is a woman with strong resolve.
B. She has been plagued by hardship.
C. She is domineering.
D. She has a strong faith.
27. "And sometimes goin' in the dark, where there ain't been no
light." Identify the device used in (lines 12 & 13)?
28. "Don't you set down on the steps". What is "Mother" saying
A. She is urging him not to become fatigued
B. She is warning of impending danger
C. She is encouraging him not to lose focus
D. She is admonishing him to stay the course
29. Based on your understanding of the poem, which of the fol-
lowing statements is TRUE?
A. Life has become easier for the poet.
B. The poet longs for a trouble-free life.
C. There have been occasions when the poet has wanted to
D. The poet is committed to finishing the journey.
30. What is the intention of the writer?
A. To evoke sympathy
B. To entertain the reader
C. To encourage the reader
D. To recount an event
The catch of the hunter was in addition too, not always constant,
to the daily plant food and small animals gathered by women.
Women collected the larger part of the group's daily needs, and
their skill in finding food, even in the poorest conditions, often kept
the group alive. Fruit, manna, honey, lizards, snakes, witchetty
grubs, roots, yams, grass seeds - almost anything grew, or moved
could be use for food. The women then usually prepared and
cooked the food in an earth oven.
As Aboriginals had to make use of the natural materials available
in their area, huts were often made from bark and boughs, some-
times flimsy and sometimes more substantial, depending on the
climate, the time of year, and the length of time that the group
were forced to remain in one camp.
When an Aboriginals child was born, he began to learn how to cope
with the material and non-material elements of his world. He had
been born into the group, and had to learn to become a full mem-
ber with knowledge of how to keep alive and also the rules and
traditions that governed his nomadic society.
31. What qualifies the Aborigines to be classified as the earli-
A. They were in existence in Australia at least 12,000 years
before Europe's inhabitants.
B. Historical evidence puts their arrival at 1788.
C. There is evidence to suggest that they arrived in Australia
D. There were eight generations of Aborigines before the
32. The last Ice Age refers to what period in history and what
was unique about that time?
A. More than 300,000 years ago, before the discovery of the
metal industry, cultivated crops and the herding of animals
B. Approximately 18,500 years ago, small groups of people
lived together hunting, fishing and gathering food.
C. More than 30,000 years ago, before the metal industry
was discovered, there was any presence of cultivated
crops or the herding of animals for food.
D. More than 12,000 years before the discovery of the metal
industry, cultivated crops and the herding of animals for
33. Describe the relationship between Australia and New
Guinea during the great last Ice Age?
A. They were joined together.
B. Cordial relations and economic ties existed between them.
C. Both countries were joined to Java and Borneo.
D. Sea passages between countries and islands were
narrower than they are today.
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