“A Devoted Son” is a short story by Anita Desai. A Devoted Son Summary appears in the collection, Games at Twilight and Other Stories. Desai’s collection of stories was published in 1978 by Vintage and received widespread popular praise.
In this article, we’ve listed all the question answers as well as the summary of the A Devoted Son exercise as part of class 12 English curriculum. Here is the table of contents:
- A Devoted Son Exercise: All Question and Answers For Class 12 English
- A Devoted Son Exercise: Reference To The Context For Class 12 English
- A Devoted Son Exercise: Reference Beyond The Text For Class 12 English
- A Devoted Son: Summary For Class 12 English
A Devoted Son Exercise: All Question and Answers For Class 12 English
Listed below are all the questions and answers for the A Devoted Son exercise for Class 12 English.
a. How did the morning papers bring ambience of celebration to the Varma family?
In the morning paper, there was the result of their son achieving success in the medical field which became the happiness and ambiance of celebration in the Varma family.
b. How did the community celebrate Rakesh’s success?
All their neighbors and relatives come to congratulate his parents by saying “Mubarak, Varmaji, your son has brought you glory,”. They bring different types of gifts, flowers to congratulate him. They slap Rakesh on the back and fill the house and garden with the
sounds and colors of a festival.
c. Why was Rakesh’s success a special matter of discussion in the neighbourhood?
Rakesh’s success was a special matter of discussion in the neighbourhood because he was the first son of the house who achieves success in the medical field and make his family proud of him. He became top in his medical field. In Verma’s family, no one is educated but Rakesh was the first who was well educated and laborious in the field of education.
d. How does the author make fun with the words ‘America’ and ‘the USA’?
In the story, the Author makes fun with the words ‘America’ and ‘the USA’ by the way of dealing with the word ‘USA‘ and ‘America‘ by Varma. Varma thinks that the USA is more reputable than America. He told his family that his son was going to the USA for higher study—not America, which was what the ignorant neighbors called it.
e. How does the author characterize Rakesh’s wife?
Rakesh’s wife is plump, uneducated, old-fashioned, even temper, charm, cooperative, and good-natured. A girl selected by his mother doesn’t make Rakesh leave home and set up independently, like any other girl. This also shows that she also have the knowledge of bearing family relationship.
f. Describe how Rakesh rises in his career.
Rakesh completed his degree with a good grade and went to the USA for higher study. He got a career opportunity in the most prestigious of all hospitals and won many of the prizes from his American colleagues. Then, he left the USA permanently and came with an aim to serve the nation and his family. Rakesh worked in the city hospital for many years. He was also promoted as a director of the city hospital after working for a long time. After some time, he opened his own clinic. Now, he is not only the best doctor of town but also the richest doctor of town.
g. How does the author describe Rakesh’s family background?
The author describes Rakesh’s family as a poor family. His father is a kerosene dealer. No one before Rakesh has to get education facilities because of his poor family condition.
h. What is the impact of Rakesh’s mother’s death on his father?
Rakesh’s father fell ill after his wife’s died. He always thinks about his life partner which leads him to the ocean of sorrow. His father remembers his past time where his wife gave spicy and fried food and also sweets. But now, his son gave him only a frugal (simple and plain and costing little) food – dry bread, boiled lentils, boiled vegetables and, if there were a bit of chicken or fish, that was boiled too. So he cried.
i. What did Rakesh do to make his father’s old age more comfortable?
When Rakesh father’s became ill. He set a nice place on the open verandah for his father to get fresh air which is required for his good health. On a summer night, he settles a bed on the lawn for his father under the star for a whole night. Rakesh arranges a caretaker (servant) for him. He provides him proper diet for his good health. He gave him only a frugal (simple and plain and costing little) food – dry bread, boiled lentils, boiled vegetables and, if there were a bit of chicken or fish, that was boiled too.
j. Why did the old man try to bribe his grandchildren?
The old man tried to bribe his grandchildren to bring jalebis (Sweets) for him.
k. Are Mr. Varma’s complaints about his diets reasonable? How?
No, it’s not reasonable because his son was giving him a proper diet and medicines for making his health better but he was behaving like a child who doesn’t want to eat medicines and frugal foods. He wants spicy, oily, and sweets foods.
A Devoted Son Exercise: Reference to the Context For Class 12 English
Listed below are the answers to the ‘Reference to the context’ part of A Devoted Son exercise.
a. How did Varma couple make sacrifices for their son’s higher education?
Varma couple made different sacrifices for their son’s higher education. They spent time, money, and their happiness to build their children’s (Rakesh) careers. No one got an education from their family yet. Varma’s parents were too poor and used to sell vegetables in the market.
So Varma’s parents have no money to send Varma to school and collages. But Varma worked hard to send his son to school and collages for his son’s better life and career.
b. Mr. Varma suffers from diseases one after another after his wife’s death. Would he have enjoyed better health if she had not died before him? Give reasons.
Mr. Varma suffers from diseases one after another after his wife’s death. Yes, he has enjoyed better health for a few more days if she had not died before him. He always thinks about his life partner which leads him to the ocean of sorrow. In the past, his wife gave spicy and fried food and also sweets.
But now, his son gave him only a frugal (simple and plain and costing little) food – dry bread, boiled lentils, boiled vegetables and, if there were a bit of chicken or fish, that was boiled too. And he also gives him different types of pills which irritate him. Because of these all things, he always lives in pain which was the reason for his death.
c. Dr. Rakesh is divided between a doctor and a son. As a son, he loves his father and worries about his weakening health but as a doctor he is strict on his father’s diet and medicine. In your view, what else could Rakesh have done to make his father’s final years more comfortable?
Dr. Rakesh is divided between a doctor and a son. As a son, he loves his father and worries about his weakening health but as a doctor, he is strict on his father’s died and medicine. In my view, Rakesh has to perform both roles but he has to concentrate on the following points:
- Rakesh should speak politely and in a respectful manner to his father rather than in a cracked voice.
- He is not too strict with his father on the matter of diet. He has to provide some oily and sweet food at least twice a month.
- He has to take his father on a tour at regular intervals.
- Rakesh has to persuade his father to take pills and medical treatment.
d. What does the story say about the relationship between grandfather and grandchildren?
The story shows that there is a strong bond between grandfather and grandchildren. Varma has shared his feeling of eating sweets with his grandchildren and his grandchildren helped him to get the sweets. Once, when his grandson playing cricket on a lawn where he sits to get fresh air, suddenly he gets one of their hard-spun balls in his eye but he does not make any complaint about it. This shows how much strong their relationship is.
e. Do you call Rakesh a devoted son? Give reasons
Yes, I call him a devoted son because he did all those things which make his parent’s life happy and comfortable. He had left America to serve his parents. Rakesh can deserve a good and educated girl but he married a plump, uneducated, old-fashioned girl only to make his mother happy. He takes care of his mother to the last illness and also sat pressing her feet even at the last moment. Not only he serve his mother but also his father. He provide him a proper and healthy diet when his father became ill. But his father did not understand his feeling and goals behind it.
A Devoted Son Exercise: Reference Beyond The Text For Class 12 English
Listed below are the answers to the ‘Reference beyond the text’ part of A Devoted Son exercise.
a. Write an essay on The Parents’ Ambition for their Children in Nepali Society. You must give at least five examples.
One of the primary roles of parents is to be a leader of their children. Dedicated, motivated parents are usually one of two kinds of leaders; ambitious leaders or led leaders. While ambition seems like a powerful quality in a leader, it’s flawed because ambition is self-serving. On the other hand, a leader who is a good follower of truth, principles, and a higher moral authority, even if it is inconvenient to themselves or lacks showiness is a powerful influence for good in the lives of their children.
Parents have great ambition for their children in Nepali Society. Most parents want their children to be the best person in society such as the best doctor, the best engineer, the best teacher, and many more. Due to parents’ ambition for their children, some children work hard to achieve their destination and get succeed at the end. But due to this the children are forced to do the thing other than their interest and follow the paths shown by the parents blindly. Due to which many children are lacking behind in Nepalese society. Thus, parents should listen to the voice and aim of their children as well for their better in future.
b. Medicines replace our diets in old age. What can be done to make old ageless less dependent on medicine?
As we get older, the body becomes less efficient and weaker. It cannot fully function the way it used to on young age and hence many viruses or diseases enter into our body. At old age our immunity system also becomes weak and our body cannot fight or prevent from the severe diseases. So to prevent form this medication is done. Hence medicines replace our diets in old age.
To make old ageless less dependent on medicine, they should do the following things:
- Exercise daily by running, jogging, playing sports, dancing or brisk walking.
- Eat three nutritional meals a day with all the food groups (carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals).
- Make sure to get enough sleep, i.e., 7-8 hours per night.
- Drink about 10-15 glasses of water a day to prevent dehydration especially in summer.
- Don’t sleep too much or too less, because either can lead to fatigue.
- Avoid harmful habits like smoking, drinking, drugs, etc.
c. Write an essay on “Care of Elderly Citizens” in about 300 words.
Elderly refers to old people who have crossed middle age. The old age is the final period of human life. During this time a person needs love and affection and proper elderly care. It is said that caring for the elderly is the moral duty of every man. Generally, an old person faces different health issues and thus he or she needs proper care. The length of an old person’ life depends on how much care he/she gets. Taking care of the elderly is not a naïve task. The care needs for the elderly is very limited. An old man doesn’t have much requirement. He/she only need a little affection, care, and a homely environment to spend his/her final stage of life.
We all should know how to take care of old people. But in today’s busy schedule some people consider the elderly a burden. They even don’t want to spare time for their parents. And thus they prefer to put their old parents in old age homes rather than taking care of them. This is nothing but a shameful act. Being a human we all should know the importance of elderly care. In every country, there are different laws to protect the elderly. But the elderly care law can’t do anything if we don’t change our mindset.
A Devoted Son Summary For Class 12 English
Here is the summary for A Devoted Son for class 12 English.
The story revolves around Dr Rakesh. He’s from a poor Indian village. Varma, his father, was a vegetable vendor. His father wished for a well-educated son. Rakesh is the first member of his family to attend college. Rakesh completed his medical exams with the highest marks in the country, which is a cause for celebration. Varma informs everyone who would listen about Rakesh’s grades and how he can now go to medical school in America.
Some people are frightened that Rakesh would forget his roots. Varma is unconcerned about this and is pleased that everyone knows his son’s name.
Rakesh spends a significant amount of time in America to complete his degree; he successfully completes the degree and has job offers from major US hospitals. The awards he receives are returned to his family for them to admire and preserve. This allows him to stay in touch with his family. He adores America, but he adores his family more, and he has always intended to come home. He’ll return as soon as he’s gained enough experience and money. He intended to work in his hometown. His parents disagree with some of his life choices, such as why he wants to return home and why he marries a local girl with little schooling.
Varma believes he should have higher ambitions. Later, he begins working in a city hospital, which differs from the American hospitals he had previously worked in. He wants to work there because he wants to make a difference in his community. He rises quickly through the ranks and eventually becomes director.
When his mother dies, his father, Varma, is heartbroken. Rakesh no longer has as much time to devote to Varma now that he has his own family. He does not want to lose his father any time soon, so he applies his medical expertise. He forbids Varma from eating sweets to help him with his stomach. Varma tries to get sweets from his grandson, which frustrates Rakesh. Rakesh wants his son to have a positive relationship with Varma, just like Rakesh does. Varma tells Rakesh and his wife that he dislikes them, but he still keeps an eye out for Varma. Rakesh finally lets Varma leave, knowing that he has done everything he can for Varma.
Conclusion: A Devoted Son Exercise and Summary
Anita Desai’s “A Devoted Son” is a story of complicated familial bonds which highlights the change of dynamics in the relationship between the father, Varma and his son, Dr. Rakesh. It is all about the duty and devotion that the son, Rakesh has for his parents. The son is brought up by his father, starts earning his livelihood and then, dutifully looks after his father. However, a crisis develops as his father, whimsical due to age, starts misinterpreting his son’s treatment.
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