Nelson Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom: SEBA, TBSE Class 10 English

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Get here the summary, questions, answers, textbook solutions, extras, pdf of the chapter Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom of SEBA ,TBSE Class 10 English (Literature, Second Language). However, the given notes/solutions should only be used for references and should be modified/changed according to needs.

Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom Mandela clipart


When Apartheid ended in South Africa, Nelson Mandela embarked on a journey that would lead to a new, more democratic form of government. Here, in this short text, Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom, Mandela describes the day he became South Africa’s first black president and the international leaders who had come to celebrate the change that was now blowing over his country. He reflected on the struggles that led to this momentous day. He recalled the countless days of struggle and suffering that he and many brave African patriots, who had since passed away, had to endure to put an end to decades of oppression and brutality. He spoke about his own upbringing and how, as he grew from a child to a young man, he realised that he and his people of dark skin were not free, and how he became inspired to fight for freedom for all. He was separated from his family and forced to live a life of secrecy and rebellion as a result of his actions. This piece concludes on a thoughtful note, stating that not only is the oppressed’s freedom limited, but the oppressor’s mind is also imprisoned by hatred – prejudices and narrow-mindedness.

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In-text questions I of Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom

1. Where did the ceremonies take place? Can you name any public buildings in India that are made of sandstone? 

Answer: The ceremonies were held in Pretoria’s beautiful sandstone amphitheatre, which was formed by the Union Buildings.

Sandstone is used to construct many public buildings in India. The Red Fort, Humayun’s Tomb, Qutub Minar, and Swaminarayan Temple in New Delhi, the palaces and buildings of Fatehpur Sikri, Jaipur’s Hawa Mahal, the Taj Mahal’s Mosque, and the Maharaja’s Palace in Jaisalmer, as well as government buildings such as the Parliament House, Presidential House, Supreme Court building, and others in Delhi, are among them.

2. Can you say how 10 May is an ‘autumn day’ in South Africa?

Answer: Because South Africa is located in the Southern Hemisphere, autumn begins in May. As a result, the 10th of May is regarded as an “autumn day” in South Africa.

3. At the beginning of his speech, Mandela mentions “an extraordinary human disaster.” What does he mean by this? What is the “glorious… human achievement” he speaks of at the end?

Answer: Mandela refers to the practice of apartheid in South Africa as an “extraordinary human disaster” at the start of his speech. This practice resulted in racial segregation in human society, depriving black people of all constitutional rights while allowing whites to rule over them.

At the end of his speech, Mandela describes the end of apartheid as a “glorious…human achievement.” A new, more tolerant society was being formed, one that did not tolerate racism or oppression of one group by another. In other words, the election of a democratic government in South Africa, with a black president, was a “glorious human achievement” because it freed the nation’s citizens from all forms of discrimination based on caste, creed, or colour,

4. What does Mandela thank the international leaders for?

Answer: In his speech, Mandela expresses gratitude to the international leaders for standing by the African people and supporting them in their triumphant victory over racial discrimination by recognising the newly formed nation. The presence of international leaders on South African soil also meant the restoration of diplomatic relations with all foreign countries that had previously boycotted the country due to its apartheid system of governance. As a result, Mandela expresses his gratitude for their presence.

5. What ideals does he set out for the future of South Africa? 

Answer: Mandela has high hopes for the future of South Africa’s newly formed nation, and he sets out a few ideals that he hopes will help the nation prosper and advance. Mandela envisions a country free of poverty and suffering. He wishes for a society free of racial and gender discrimination. Everyone was to be treated as one and to work together to free everyone from the bonds of poverty, deprivation, suffering, and all forms of discrimination.

In-text questions II of Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom

1. What do the military generals do? How has their attitude changed, and why?

Answer: They salute Mandela as he stands on the podium. As a result, they swore allegiance to him as well as to the newly formed nation of South Africa.

Due to the end of apartheid, the attitude of military officials has changed. When apartheid reigned in South Africa, the law discriminated against black people. Mandela would have been arrested by these same generals. After fair elections, Mandela was elected president of the new nation, which had been created as a result of the unimaginable sacrifices of countless patriots. So, the same people who would have arrested Mandela earlier now salute him in his honour.

2. Why were the two national anthems sung?

Answer: To show solidarity, mutual acceptance, and respect, the two national anthems were sung. Despite their differences, the blacks and whites sang the other’s anthem as well as their own. They were meant to be symbolic of the people’s desire to build a multicultural nation free of discrimination.

3. How does Mandela describe the systems of government in his country in the first decade, and in the final decade, of the twentieth century?

Answer: Under the practice of apartheid, the government in Mandela’s country created one of the most inhumane societies based on social discrimination and intolerance in the first decade of the twentieth century. (ii)On the other hand, in the final decade of the twentieth century, after years of struggle and sacrifice by an untold number of people, apartheid was abolished and replaced by a free society system that recognised the rights of all people, regardless of race or creed.

4. What does courage mean to Mandela?

Answer: To Mandela, courage is the triumph of man over his fears. It does not imply a lack of fear, but rather the ability to overcome one’s fears.

5. Which does he think is natural, to love or to hate? 

Answer: Mandela believes that human beings are born with the ability to love, whereas ‘hatred’ is a feeling that develops over time as a result of social or political pressure.

In-text questions III of Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom

1. What “twin obligations” does Mandela mention? 

Answer: According to Mandela, each person has twin obligations, or two duties that he is obligated to fulfil: the first, obligations to his family members – parents, wife, and children; and the second, obligations to his people, community, and country.

2. What did being free mean to Mandela as a loy, and as a student? How does he contrast these “transitory freedoms” with “the basic and honourable freedoms”? 

Answer: Being free meant being able to run around in the fields near his home, swim in the village stream, roast corn under the open sky, and ride on the backs of bulls when Mandela was a child.

Freedom as a student meant being able to stay out late, read whatever he wanted, and go wherever he wanted. As Mandela grew older, he realised that these were all transitory or temporary liberties, and the desire for fundamental and honourable freedom came to him with youth. These included a desire to do everything he was capable of doing, such as earning his own living, marrying and having a family, and living a lawful life.

3. Does Mandela think the oppressor is free? Why/Why not?

Answer: Mandela believes that the oppressor, like the oppressed, is not free. By being able to oppress another human being, one is already imprisoned behind the bars of prejudice and narrow-mindedness; and by robbing someone of their freedom, the oppressor becomes a prisoner of hatred.

Textual questions/thinking about the text of Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom

1. Why did such a large number of international leaders attend the inauguration? What did it signify the triumph of?

Answer: There had been an inhumane apartheid system in place in South Africa since the early 1900s. As a result, the international community had shunned and boycotted the country. But after years of struggle by locals led by Nelson Mandela, apartheid came to an end, and democratic elections were held in which all races were invited to participate. He became president after his political party won the election. Nelson Mandela was the first black President of the country. A large number of international leaders had come to celebrate the end of apartheid, to declare that South Africa was now accepted as a member of the international community, to pay their respects to the man who had made it possible, and to attend Nelson Mandela’s inauguration as South Africa’s first black President.

It was a symbol of humanity and justice triumphing over unjust social prejudices.

2. What does Mandela mean when he says he is “simply the sum of all those African patriots” who had gone before him?

Answer: African patriots had sacrificed their lives in the fight against apartheid in the thousands. Mandela says he represents all of those patriots, and that he alone is not responsible for achieving freedom, but that he represents the sufferings and courage of all those who had died fighting for the cause.

3. Would you agree that the “depths of oppression” create “heights of character”? How does Mandela illustrate this? Can you add your own examples to this argument? 

Answer: Yes, I agree with Mandela that the “heights of character” are created by the “depths of oppression.” Mandela exemplifies this by citing how years of oppression and brutality in South Africa produced many great leaders with extraordinary courage, wisdom, and generosity. He intends to say that the more severe the brutality they faced, the greater their bravery. However, because such brutality is now a thing of the past, the chances of seeing such people have also decreased.

India’s independence struggle spawned a number of freedom fighters whose courage and wisdom are unmatched to this very day. When the Indians were oppressed by the British, their resilience and determination grew stronger.

4. How did Mandela’s understanding of freedom change with age and experience?

Answer: In his youth, Nelson Mandela thought freedom consisted of being able to do simple things for himself, such as playing when he wanted, reading what he wanted, and going wherever he wanted to. He was right. But as he grew older, it dawned on him that he and his people weren’t truly free. And so his hunger for personal freedom grew into a hunger for the freedom of all of his people, which led him to join the African National Congress (ANC). Their dignity and self-respect had been stripped away by the white government in South Africa.

5. How did Mandela’s ‘hunger for freedom’ change his life? 

Answer: He joined the African National Congress when he realised that his people were not allowed to live a life of dignity and self-respect in their own country. In his new state, he was a fully awakened person with a serious purpose. Formerly afraid of his oppressors, he had the courage to speak out against them; he had been a law-abiding attorney, but became a criminal in the eyes of the white law; he had loved life, but now lived as a monk; he had loved his family, but was now forced to live far away from them.

Additional/extra questions with answers/solutions of Nelson Mandela Long Walk to Freedom

1. On the day of his inauguration, who accompanied Nelson Mandela? Who had been sworn in before him?

Answer: Nelson Mandela was accompanied by his daughter Zenani on the day of the inauguration.

The second deputy president, Mr De Klerk and the first deputy president, Mr Thabo Mbeki were sworn in before Nelson Mandela.

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7. Draw a parallel between South Africa’s fight against apartheid and India’s struggle for independence in 100-150 words. 

Answer: South Africa’s struggle against apartheid and India’s struggle for independence were both revolts against oppression and domination by people who saw themselves as superior by race and skin colour. Local people in both countries were brutalised and humiliated to the point of revolt. Locals had no say in how their country was run, and only those who accepted the British tyranny were granted minimal privileges, while those who openly rebelled against them were sentenced to death without even a trial. There is also a parallel between the way Nelson Mandela led South Africa’s struggle and Mahatma Gandhi led India’s. As a result, in their respective countries, they are both referred to as “The Father of the Nation.”

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