“Thank You Ma’am” Long Questions and Answers (L.A.Q) by Langston Hughes, Class XII, WBCHSE
Thank You Ma’am Questions and Answers • Thank You Ma’am LAQ • Thank You Ma’am Long Questions and Answers • Thank You Ma’am Question and Answer
Thank You Ma’am by Langston Hughes
(1) “I would teach you right from wrong.”- who said this, to whom and when? How did the speaker transform the person spoken to her? [1+1+1+3] [HS 2016]
Ans. In Langston Hughes’ short story “Thank You Ma’am” Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones said to Roger when she caught the boy red-handed snatching her purse.
Instead of taking him to the police station, Mrs. Jones brought Roger to her home. She asked him to wash his face and dry it with a clean towel. She fed him cake and cocoa with motherly care. She shared her personal experience. Like a moral teacher, she tried to transfer the boy. She advised the boy not to commit such a crime again. She also gave the boy ten dollars for the shoes and advised that shoes got by the devilish way would burn his feet. In this way, the lady tried to transform Roger by playing the role of a perfect friend and guide.
(2) “Eat some more, son” – Who is the speaker? Who is been spoken to? What food was offered by the speaker? What features of the speaker’s character is revealed here? [1+1+2+2] [HS 2023]
Ans. Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones is the speaker in Langstone Hughes’ short story “Thank You Ma’am.”
Roger, the young boy who tried to snatch her pocketbbk is been spoken to.
The speaker offered him half of her ten-cent cake and cocoa.
Mrs. Jones understood that the boy was hungry. She became sympathetic towards him when she learnt that he had no one to take care of him. She prepares dinner with lima beans, ham and cocoa. Then she offered him half of her ten-cent cake and uttered the quoted line. The motherly feeling and affection of Mrs. Jones is revealed in this line.
(3) What had Mrs Jones guessed to be the real reason behind Roger’s action? What was the real reason? What did Mrs Jones do so that Roger could fulfill his wish? What did she tell him then? [1+1+1+3] [HS 2020]
Ans. Mrs. Jones had guessed that Roger snatched her purse out of hunger.
The real reason was that he wanted to buy a pair of blue suede shoes.
Mrs. Jones gave Roger ten dollars so that he could buy the suede shoes.
Mrs. Jones advised Roger not to snatch anyone’s pocketbook because shoes got by the devilish way would burn his feet. She means to say that he would never be happy by doing such immoral act. She also advised him to behave properly with others and lead honest life.
(4) “You ought to be my son. I would teach you right from wrong.” – Who speaks (and) to whom? Did the speaker manage to teach what he/she claimed to teach? Give reason for your answer. [2+4] [HS 2017]
Ans. Same as Question No. 1.
(5) “Do you need somebody to get to the store?” – Who is the speaker? To whom did the speaker say this? Why did the speaker want to go to the store? What did they have in supper? [1+1+1+3] [HS 2018]
Ans. Roger, a young boy who tried to snatch the purse of Mrs. Jones is the speaker.
Roger said this to Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones.
The speaker wanted to go to the store to get some milk or something.
They had lima beans, ham and cocoa for dinner. Then they shared a ten-cent cake.
(6) “You gonna take me to jail?” – Who asked this question and to whom? When did the speaker ask this question? What reply did the speaker get? [2+3+1] [HS 2019]
Ans. Roger, a young boy asked this question to Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones in “Thank You Ma’am.”
Mrs. Jones caught Roger red-handed when he tried to snatch her purse. She firmly gripped his shirt front and took him to her house. When they entered the room and Mrs. Jones asked him to wash his face, Roger asked this question bending over the sink.
Mrs. Jones replied that she would not take him anywhere with that face.
(7) What kind of a woman is Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones? 
Or, What features of the character of Mrs. Luella Bates are exposed in the short story “Thank You Ma’am”? 
Ans. Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones is the central character of the story. She is at once empathetic, generous and perceptive. At the beginning of the story, Mrs. Bates appears to be a stern, able bodied woman. She is quite quick to react to the boy’s action and single- handedly drags the boy home. She realises that all the boy needs is motherly love to put him on the right track. So, she makes him wash his face, gives him food and money to buy his coveted blue suede shoes. She shares her personal experiences. She advises Roger no to snatch any other’s purse again. Overall, she is a kind hearted who has transformed a boy like Roger with her motherly affection.
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Written by Koushik Kumar Kundu
Koushik Kumar Kundu was among the toppers when he completed his Masters from Vidyasagar University after completing his Bachelors degree with Honours in English Literature from The University of Burdwan. He also completed B.Ed from the University of Burdwan.
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