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Chapter 5- Print Culture and The Modern World Interview Questions Answers

Question 1 :
Give reason for the following:
a. Woodblock print only came to Europe after 1295.

Answer 1 : (a)

 Marco Polo, the Italian explorer, visited China and learnt the technology of woodblock printing. When he returned to Italy in 1295, he brought this knowledge back with him. Gradually this knowledge spread from Italy to other parts of Europe.

Question 2 :
Give reason for the following:
b. Martin Luther was in favour of print and spoke out in praise of it.

Answer 2 : (b) 

In 1517, Martin Luther, the religious reformer, wrote ninety-five theses that criticised the corrupt practices of the Catholic Church and pasted these on the church door in Wittenberg. Very soon, thousands of copies of Luther’s theses were printed, spreading his ideas among people. Martin Luther was deeply moved by realizing the power of printing, which brought about the reformation movement and the eventual birth of Protestantism.

Question 3 :
Give reason for the following:
c. The Roman Catholic Church began keeping an Index of prohibited books from the mid-sixteenth century

Answer 3 : (c)  

Print and popular literature encouraged many distinctive interpretations of religious faiths and ideas. In the 16th century, Manocchio, a roller in Italy, began to read books available readily in his locality. He gave a new interpretation of the Bible and formulated a view of God and creation that enraged the Roman Catholic Church. As a result, Manocchio was hauled up twice and ultimately executed when the Roman Catholic Church began its inquisition.

Question 4 :
Give reason for the following:
d. Gandhi said the fight for Swaraj is a fight for the liberty of speech, liberty of the press, and freedom of association

Answer 4 : (d) Mahatma Gandhi said these words in 1922 during the Non-cooperation Movement (1920-22). According to him, without the liberty of speech, the liberty of the press and freedom of association, no nation can even survive. If the country was to get free from foreign domination, then these liberties were quite important.

Question 5 :

Write short notes on what you know about:

a. The Gutenberg Press

Answer 5 : (a) 

The Gutenberg Press was the first printing press of Europe. It was invented by Johannes Gutenberg of Strasbourg. He grew up in a large agricultural estate and had knowledge and experience in operating olive and wine presses. He invented the printing press around the year 1448 with the Bible being the first book to be printed.

Question 6 : Write short notes on what you know about:
b. Erasmus’s idea of the printed book

Answer 6 : (b) 

Erasmus, the Latin scholar, was not happy with the printing of books because he was afraid that this would lead to the circulation of books with rebellious ideas. He felt that although a few books may give useful information, the majority of books may just be irrelevant or illogical through which scandalous of irreligious ideas will spread, ultimately leading to incitement of rebellion.

Question 7 : Write short notes on what you know about:
c. The Vernacular Press Act

Answer 7 : (c) 

The Vernacular Press Act was passed in 1878 by the British government in India. This act provided the government with extensive rights to censor reports and editorials in the Vernacular Press. If a Vernacular Paper published any seditious material, the paper was banned, and its printing machinery was seized and destroyed.

Question 8 :
What did the spread of print culture in the nineteenth century India mean to:
a. Women

Answer 8 : (a) Women: Women became as important as readers and writers. Reading habits improved among them. With an increase in literacy, women took great interest in reading and writing. Many journals started emphasizing the importance of women’s education. Many magazines and books were especially published for women. The print culture gave women some amount of freedom to read and develop their own views on various issues, especially those related to women.

Question 9 : What did the spread of print culture in the nineteenth century India mean to:
b. The poor

Answer 9 : (b) The Poor: As the literacy rate improved in Europe as well as in India, printed material, especially for entertainment, began to reach even the poor. In England ‘penny magazines’ were carried by peddlers and sold for a penny, so that even poor people could buy them. Those who could not read could listen to the stories and folklore. These stories and folklore could be read out to them by others. Books could be hired on a nominal fee from some book owners. Even in India, very cheap small books were brought to the market in 19th century Madras towns,  which allowed poor people to have access to print culture.

Question 10 : What did the spread of print culture in the nineteenth century India mean to:
c. Reformers

Answer 10 : (c) Reformers: Reformers used newspapers, journals and books to highlight the social evils prevailing in the society. Raja Ram Mohan Roy published the ‘Sambad Kaumudi’ to highlight the plight of widows. From the 1860s, many Bengali women writers like Kailashbashini Debi wrote books highlighting the experiences of women, about how women were imprisoned at home, kept in ignorance, forced to do hard domestic labour and were treated unjustly by the menfolk they served.



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