Directions (Qs. 1-10): Read the given passage carefully and answer the questions given after the passage:
- Often, we passionately pursue matters that in the future appear to be contradictory to our real intention or nature; and triumph is followed by remorse or regret. There are numerous examples of such a trend in the annals of history and contemporary life.
- Alfred Nobel was the son of Immanuel Nobel, an inventor who experimented extensively with explosives. Alfred too carried out research and experiments with a large range of chemicals; he found new methods to blast rocks for the construction of roads and bridges; he was engaged in the development of technology and different weapons; his life revolved around rockets and cannons and gun powder. The ingenuity of the scientist brought him enough wealth to buy the Bofors armament plant in Sweden.
- Paradoxically, Nobel’s life was a busy one yet he was lonely; and as he grew older, he began suffering from guilt of having invented the dynamite that was being used for destructive purposes. He set aside a huge part of his wealth to institute Nobel Prizes. Besides honouring men and women for their extraordinary achievements in physics, chemistry, medicine and literature, he wished to honour people who worked for the promotion of peace.
- It’s strange that the very man whose name was closely connected with explosives and inventions that helped in waging wars willed a large part of his earnings for the people who work for the promotion of peace and the benefit of mankind. The Nobel Peace Prize is intended for a person who has accomplished the best work for fraternity among nations, for abolition or reduction of war and for promotion of peace.
- Another example that comes to one’s mind is that of Albert Einstein. In 1939, fearing that the Nazis would win the race to build the world’s first atomic bomb, Einstein urged President Franklin D Roosevelt to launch an American programme on nuclear research. The matter was considered and a project called the Manhattan Project was initiated. The project involved intense nuclear research for construction of the world’s first atomic bomb. All this while, Einstein had the impression that the bomb would be used to protect the world from the Nazis. But in 1945, when Hiroshima was bombed to end World War II, Einstein was deeply grieved and he regretted his endorsement of the need for nuclear research.
- He also stated that had he known that the Germans would be unsuccessful in making the atomic bomb, he would have probably never recommended making one. In 1947, Einstein began working for the cause of disarmament. But, Einstein’s name still continues to be linked with the bomb.
Man’s fluctuating thoughts, changing opinions, varying opportunities keep the mind in a state of flux. Hence, the paradox of life: it’s certain that nothing is certain in life.
- The Manhattan Project was initiated
(a) in honour of Einstein.
(b) to carry out nuclear research.
(c) to protect the Nazis.
(d) to bomb Hiroshima.
- In paragraph 4, the word ‘accomplished’ means
(a) made an effort to do something
(b) won awards
(c) worked hard
(d) completed successfully.
- In the fifth paragraph, the word ‘endorsement’ means
(a) making a promise to do something.
(b) expressing one’s regret.
(c) expressing one’s opposition.
(d) expressing one’s approval or support.
- Working with arms and ammunition helped Alfred to amass
- The paradox, ‘it’s certain that nothing is certain in life’, indicates the writer’s
(a) persuasive nature
(b) scientific mind
(c) hatred for scientists
(d) analytical mind.
- Immanuel’s interest in dynamites influenced Alfred’s inclination for working
(a) with explosives
(b) for humanity
(c) with contradiction
(d) for the Nobel Peace Prize.
- One of the paradoxes in Alfred’s life was that he was
(a) lonely yet rich
(b) occupied yet lonely
(c) intelligent yet lonely
(d) hard working but a failure.
- The passage is
(a) an argumentative essay
(b) a process essay.
(c) an expository essay.
(d) a descriptive essay.
- Einstein had the impression that the Germans would
(a) be unsuccessful in making the atomic bomb
(b) bomb Hiroshima
(c) be successful in making the world’s first atomic bomb
(d) work for humanity.
- Alfred established the Nobel Prizes to
(a) use his wealth for hard working people
(b) honour only those people who are intelligent
(c) remind people of his achievements
(d) ease his guilt and promote work for the betterment of mankind.
Answers: 1 (b); 2 (d); 3 (d); 4 (a); 5 (d); 6 (a); 7 (b); 8 (d); 9 (c); 10 (d).