All the World's a Stage | Summary and Questions & Answers Class 11 by Suraj Bhatt

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All the World's a Stage | Summary and Questions & Answers Class 11 by Suraj Bhatt
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All the World's a Stage Class 11 Summary and Questions & Answers


All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare 

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GLOSSARY OF 👇

All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare 

furnace (n.): a device for heating

hose (n.): tights, thin trousers that men wore in Shakespeare's time

mewling (v.): crying weakly with a soft, high-pitched sound

oaths (n.): promises

oblivion (n.): a state of nothingness

pard (n.): a leopard

puking (v.): vomiting

sans (prep.): without, lacking

satchel (n.): a shoulder bag for school

treble (adj.): high-pitched

whining (v.): uttering a high-pitched cry

woeful (adj.): sorrowful; distressed with grief

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ABOUT THE POET OF 👇

All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare

Name: William Shakespeare

Born: April 1564

Died: 23 April 1616

William Shakespeare (1564-1616).

English poet and playwright.

Shakespeare is widely considered to be the greatest writer in the English language. He wrote 38 plays and 154 sonnets.

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ABOUT THE POEM 👇

All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare 

This realistic poem " All the World's a Stage" has been composed by one of the renowned English poet William Shakespeare. 


The lines of this poem have been taken from one of Shakespeare's plays named "As You Like It". This pastoral comedy "As You Like It" has been believed to have been written in 1599 and first published in the First Folio in 1623. The play's first performance is not fixed, though a performance at Wilton House in 1603.


These lines have been delivered by one of the characters of this play whose name is Jaques, a sad character of this play. He has delivered these lines in Act II Scene VII line 139. Jacques has used these lines as a monologue (soliloquy).


This poem has presented the real aspect of human life where the world and its people have been presented metaphorically as a stage and the players. The poet has presented seven different stages of a person's life here in this poem. This poem has shown the beginning and the end of human life in the worldly stage where humans have to perform different roles in their lifetime and finally move towards their final destination (death) leaving this worldly stage.

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MAIN THEME OF THE POEM 👇

All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare

This poem has presented the real theme that a person is the ultimate loser in the game of life.

This monologue has presented the theme of life and its seven stages.  Shakespeare has described these stages that are observed in the life span of a man.

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MAIN MESSAGE OF THE POEM 👇

All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare

Through this monologue, Shakespeare gives us the message of the impermanence of life.  How quickly the game of our life comes to an end and strange events end is portrayed in this speech.

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DETAILED SUMMARY OF 👇

All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare

SUMMARY OF JAQUES'S MONOLOGUE: 

In the very beginning, the speaker has compared the whole world with a stage where men and women are merely players (actors). They have their entrances and exits. They enter the stage (world) when they are born and exit when they die. Here in this stage, every man has to play seven different roles based on his age during his lifetime.


SEVEN STAGES OF MAN'S LIFE AND HIS ACTS:

Infanthood Stage:

The first stage of a man's life is infanthood. He plays in the arms of his nurse (mother). He often vomits and cries in this stage. He is fully dependent on others' care.


Stage of Boyhood:

In his second stage of boyhood, he is a school going student. He slings his bag over his shoulder with his shining face and creeps to school unwillingly like a snail.


Stage of a Lover:

He becomes a lover in his third stage. Here, his breath is hot. He is very busy composing ballads for his beloved's eyebrows and yearns for her attention.


Stage of a Soldier:

In the fourth stage, he is aggressive and ambitious with full of strange oaths. He seems like a leopard with his beard. He seeks reputation in all that he does. He is willing to die in a battle to earn ‘the bubble reputation’. He seems courageous even in the mouth of canon. He is ready to guard his country and becomes a soldier.


Stage of Maturity and Wisdom:

In his fifth stage, he becomes a fair judge with maturity and wisdom. He has a fair round belly. He seems firm and serious with his eyes and formal cut beard. He tries to provide fair justice to others.


Stage of Old age:

In the sixth stage, he is seen with loose pantaloons and spectacles. He becomes a thin old man. His manly voice changes into a thin childish tone.


Stage of Extreme Old age (Second Childhood):

The last stage of all is his second childhood. Slowly, he loses his faculties of sight, hearing, smell and taste and exits from the roles of his life.


Thus, Shakespeare has presented different images of the seven stages of a man’s life in the poem ‘All the World’s a Stage’.


Life is like a drama, and the world is a stage where we all are actors and play our roles.

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SHORT SUMMARY OF 👇 

All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare

This poem "All the world's a stage" is a realistic poem that has been composed by a renowned English poet William Shakespeare. The main theme of this poem is that man is the ultimate loser in the game of life.   According to Shakespeare, the world is a stage and everyone is a player. He says that every man has seven stages during his lifetime. He performs different seven roles in his lifetime and finally exits from this worldly stage. The first stage of a man is childhood. He plays in the arms of his mother. He often vomits and cries in this stage. In his second stage, the man is an unwilling school going student. He becomes a lover in his third stage. He is very busy composing ballads for his beloved and yearns for her attention. In the fourth stage, he is aggressive and ambitious. He seeks reputation in all that he does. He is ready to guard his country and becomes a soldier. In his fifth stage, he becomes a fair judge with maturity and wisdom. In the sixth stage, he is seen with loose pantaloons and spectacles. His manly voice changes into a childish treble. The last stage of all is his second childhood. Slowly, he loses his faculties of sight, hearing, smell and taste and exits from the roles of his life. Thus, Shakespeare has presented the pictures of the seven stages of a man’s life in the poem ‘All the World’s a Stage.'

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TEXTBOOK'S QUESTIONS & ANSWERS OF 👇

All the World's a Stage by William Shakespeare 

BEFORE READING 

a. How does life begin?

Answer:

Life begins with the stage of infanthood. This stage is considered as the beginning of our life where we are fully dependent on others.


b. Do you think that the whole world is a stage?

Answer:

Yes, I think that the whole world is a stage. Here, we come through the entrance (birth) and perform our different roles in different stages and finally depart through the exit (death).


c. Are we the actors in the world? What roles can a person play in his/her life?

Answer:

Yes, we are the actors in the world. A person can play different roles in his/her life based on his/her age. A person can play seven different roles in his/her life. He/She can play the following roles:

Infanthood, Boyhood, A Lover, A Soldier, A Judge, Old age, Second Childhood.

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a. Why does the poet compare the world with a stage?

Answer:

The poet compares the world to a stage because he considers all men and women like the actors of a drama. These actors perform their different roles here in this stage and leave this worldly stage one day.


b. What is the first stage in a human’s life? In what sense can it be a troubling stage?

Answer:

The first stage in a human's life is the stage of infanthood. It can be a troubling stage in the sense that this stage is a fully dependent stage where the infant is fully under the care of the mother. The infant can cry and even vomit anytime in the mother's arms.


c. Describe the second stage of life based on the poem.

Answer:

The second stage of life is the stage of boyhood. In this stage, the boy is a school going student. He slings his bag over his shoulder with his shining face and creeps to school unwillingly like a snail.


d. Why is the last stage called second childhood?

Answer:

The last stage is called second childhood because here in this stage the man loses his senses of sight, hearing, smell and taste. He acts like a child and finally exits from the roles of his life.


e. In what sense are we the players in the world stage?

Answer:

We are the players in the world stage in the sense that we perform different roles here in this world stage. We play seven different roles in our entire lifetime and finally depart from this world stage.

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REFERENCE TO THE CONTEXT 

a. Explain the following lines:

All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players

Answer:

Here in these lines, the poet has compared the whole world with a stage where men and women are only players (actors). After birth, they perform their many roles here in this worldly stage and finally leave this stage moving towards their final destination (death). 


b. Explain the following lines briefly with reference to the context.

They have their exits and their entrances;

And one man in his time plays many parts,

Answer:

These beautiful lines have been taken from William Shakespeare's realistic poem "All the World's a Stage". These lines are the parts of Jacues's monologue. Here, the poet has said that the people in the world have their entrances (birth) and exits (death). People arrive here in this worldly stage through birth and leave this stage through death. A man here in this worldly stage has to perform many roles in his lifetime and leave the stage after his death.


c. Read the given lines and answer the questions that follow.

Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel and shining morning face, creeping like snail unwillingly to school.

i. Which stage of life is being referred to here by the poet?

Answer:

The childhood stage of life is being referred to here by the poet.


ii. Which figure of speech has been employed in the second line?

Answer:

In the second line, simile,  a figure of speech has been employed where the boy has been compared with snail using like.


iii. Who is compared to the snail?

Answer:

The school going boy is compared to the snail.


iv. Does the boy go to the school willingly?

Answer:

No, the boy doesn't go to school willingly. His unwillingness can easily be seen through his motion of snail towards his school.


d. Simile and metaphor are the two major poetic devices used in this poem. Explain citing examples of each.

Answer:

Here in this poem, we find major poetic devices as simile and metaphor. The poet has used these poetic devices a lot. The examples of simile and metaphor of this poem are as follows:

a) “All the world's a stage” - Metaphor

b) “And all the men and women merely players” - Metaphor

c) “And shining morning face, creeping like snail” - Simile

d) “Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard,” - Simile

e) “Seeking the bubble reputation” - Metaphor

f) “His youthful hose, well sav’d, a world too wide” - Metaphor

g) “and his big manly voice, turning again toward childish treble” - Metaphor


e. Which style does the poet use to express his emotions about how he thinks that the world is a stage and all the people living in it are mere players? 

Answer:

The poet uses a narrative style to express his innermost emotions about how he thinks that the world is a stage and all the people living in it are mere players or characters. These characters go through seven different phases in their lives. He has explained the real aspects of human life for all readers to understand the reality of life.


f. What is the theme of this poem?

Answer:

The theme of this poem is that person is the ultimate loser in the game of life. A person makes an entry into this worldly stage and performs different roles in his lifetime. Finally, he/she leaves this worldly stage struggling in different circumstances. He/She comes empty-handed here and leaves this stage empty-handed. He/She brings nothing and takes nothing.

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 REFERENCE BEYOND THE TEXT 

a. Describe the various stages of a human’s life picturised in the poem “All the World’s a Stage.”

Answer:

According to Shakespeare, the world is a stage and everyone is a player. He says that every man has seven stages during his lifetime. The first stage of a man is childhood. He plays in the arms of his mother. He often vomits and cries in this stage. In his second stage, the man is an unwilling school going student. He becomes a lover in his third stage. He is very busy composing ballads for his beloved and yearns for her attention. In the fourth stage, he is aggressive and ambitious. He seeks reputation in all that he does. He is ready to guard his country and becomes a soldier. In his fifth stage, he becomes a fair judge with maturity and wisdom. In the sixth stage, he is seen with loose pantaloons and spectacles. His manly voice changes into a childish treble. The last stage of all is his second childhood. Slowly, he loses his faculties of sight, hearing, smell and taste and exits from the roles of his life. Thus, Shakespeare has presented the pictures of the seven stages of a man’s life in the poem ‘All the World’s a Stage.'


b. Is Shakespeare’s comparison of human’s life with a drama stage apt? How?

Answer:

Yes, Shakespeare's comparison of a human's life with a drama stage is apt. He compares the whole world with a stage where men and women are only actors. In a drama, every player enters the stage, acts his/her part and then exits. In the same way, we enter this world by birth. We lead our life in different characters. We exit from this world at the time of our death. Shakespeare says that every man has seven stages during his lifetime. His opinion related to life is quite right. Players or people come into this worldly stage and perform their seven different roles and finally part away from this stage. Our life is divided into seven different stages and in these stages, we keep on performing different roles seeking various things in our life as actors. Here in this worldly stage, we play the role of an infant, a boy, a lover, a soldier, a judge, an old man and an extremely old man.


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