Self-Contained Questions & Answers

Hi Everyone!! This article will share Self-Contained Questions & Answers.

This poem is written by Walt Whitman. In my previous posts, I have shared the questions and answers of Sheem The Wolf Boy, Cats Big and Small and The Cranky Macaw so, you can check these posts as well.  

Self-Contained Questions & Answers

Question 1: Fill in the blanks to complete the summary of the poem.


The poet Walt Whitman talks about humans and animals in the poem. He explains how humans are never satisfied with their lives. Whitman compares the nature of humans with that of animals.

In the beginning, Whitman expresses a whimsical wish to live with the animals. He feels that the animals are always calm. They are not dependent on others, like human beings, for any of their needs. For example, we are always looking for company so that we are not lonely. We like to surround ourselves with people and really like it when we are told how popular we are. Animals do not need to look to someone who has more authority and show obedience to him or her.

Animals do not spend their lives complaining about life like humans. Animals, unlike humans, do not worry about a week from now or a year from now. Animals live for the present. They only worry about their immediate needs. They do not waste time discussing their duty to God. Not a single animal is unhappy on the whole earth.

Question 2: Choose the correct answer.

1. What does Whitman mean by ‘They do not lie awake in the dark and weep for their sins’?

(a) Humans are sinners and animals do no wrong.
(b) Humans in their ambition do many wrong things. When they are alone at night, they think back about them and regret but will not hesitate to do them again.
(c) Animals don’t rely on humans.

2. ‘Not one kneels to another, nor to his kind that lived thousands of years ago’ means

(a) animals unlike humans believe in hierarchy.
(b) animals cannot kneel.
(c) animals, unlike humans, don’t try to impress others of their species and don’t worship their ancestors either.

3. What does ‘Not one is respectable and unhappy over the whole earth’ mean?

(a) In the animal kingdom, not one animal is over another in terms of status and wealth. In contrast to this, there is constant competition between humans and this makes them unhappy.
(b) Animals are dumb creatures who perform only simple functions and this makes their lives easy.
(c) Animals lead a simple life and have no worries unlike human beings.

Question 3: Based on your understanding of the poem ‘Self-Contained’, which of the following choices do you think are important?


1. It is good for the father or the husband to earn money by working so much that he does not have enough time for his family.
2. Children and adults should learn how to find enjoyment in simple pleasures like walking in the rain, or meeting your neighbour rather than calling them on the phone.
3. Never be satisfied with what you have and always strive to get more.
4. It is acceptable to hurt others or lie in order to fulfil your dreams and wishes.
5. Everyone should be treated according to the amount of money or the number of the latest gadgets that they have.
6. If you make mistakes, you should apologize or make it right rather than hide it or blame it on someone else.

So, these were Self-Contained Questions & Answers.

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