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PROLOGUE. Summariser. 13 March 1940, Caxton Hall, Westminster, London Udham Singh is at a meeting, in which many people attended, including Lord Zetland and Sir Michael O’Dwyer . Udham shoots O’Dwyer , in revenge for killing all those innocent people in India several years ago.

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  • 13 March 1940, Caxton Hall, Westminster, London
  • Udham Singh is at a meeting, in which many people attended, including Lord Zetland and Sir Michael O’Dwyer.
  • Udham shoots O’Dwyer, in revenge for killing all those innocent people in India several years ago.
discussion director
Discussion Director
  • Who are the important characters in the prologue?
  • What assumptions can be made about Sir Michael O’Dwyer from his description?
  • From the information given, why is Udham so hateful towards O’Dwyer?
part 2 the brothers city of ghosts
Part 2 The brothers – City of ghosts

By Minh Hua, Monique Volf & Tim Eastwood

  • The revelation of Sohni’s mother’s real cause of death might explain Darshanas harsh change in appearance previous to marrying Gulbaru. Also the boys witness a man shot in the market because he possessed a gun, this startles the boys. There is also reference to Mohni and the mysterious woman's relationship and Gurdial, Jeevan and Bissens relationship which is based on relation , understanding and raw emotion. There is also references to Bissen being a drug addict in particular addicted to opium.
  • The mysterious woman makes another appearance, encountering Bissen outside the post office and again happens to know things she shouldn’t know.
  • Jeevan also is introduced to the revolutionaries and Han’s Raj tries to gain his trust with lies and understanding.
discussion director1
Discussion director
  • What do you think is the significance and mystery beneath Mohni and the mysterious woman’s relationship?
  • What is your opinion of the mysterious woman being all knowing and all seeing and why do you think Bali Rai has made her this way? What does he wish to accomplish by this?
  • How might have Jeevan’s experience with his mothers death have affected his identity and behaviour?
  • Bissen, Jeevan and Gurdial are all tied together in an unique way, this is because they rely on each other emotionally because they can relate. However, they don’t talk about their feelings with each other, do you agree with this?
  • How might befriending the revolutionaries influence Jeevan in positive and negative ways?
discussion director2
Discussion Director

6. Is Gurdial right in giving up on his quest so quickly and what do you think of Bissen’s agreeing and encouraging him to give up?

7. How would you describe Hans Raj’s personality and tactics with convincing Jeevan to join his rebellion?

  • What does TheerryMaadhimean?
  • What ties Bissen, Jeevan and Gurdial together?
  • What words are used to describe Darshana’s appearance now?
  • What does the Rowlatt act allow?
  • What happened to Jeevan’s mother?
  • What is a Kotwali?
  • Who is compared to a buffalo?
part 3 the revolutionaries

Part 3-The Revolutionaries

Presented to you by group Tu (2)

Page 1

  • Hi~ today you’re presenters will be:

Vocabulary - Vincent Zou

Scene Selector – Kai Zhong

Discussion director – Liam Na

Summariser – Peter Nguyen


Page 2

home index
Home - Index


Scene Selector



Discussion Director


Page 3

vocabulary simplifier1
Vocabulary Simplifier
  • Maachord – an insulting term. Pg. 131 Para 1
  • This word was used many times by people against the soldiers
  • Sardonically – scornfully or cynically mocking pg. 131 Para 3
  • Unfamiliar word
  • Aquiline – curved or hooked, similar to an eagles beak pg. 132 Para 5
  • Describes Pritam's facial features
  • Parattah– an Indian flat bread, usually served as a crispy side pg. 132 Para 2
  • I wanted to know what food it was
  • Dhal – a preparation of pulses stripped from their outer shell pg. 132 Para 2
  • I wanted to know what food it was
  • Hartal– strike, protest
  • Unfamiliar word
  • Waylaid– stop or interrupt someone from conversation or trouble pg. 133 Para 3
  • Unfamiliar word


Page 4 .1

vocabulary simplifier2
Vocabulary Simplifier
  • Chastised – to punish someone by beating them pg. 133 4
  • Chastising was common during this period of time
  • Protégé– a persons welfare, training or career is promoted by someone influential pg. 133 5
  • Foreign word
  • Whoremonger– a person who deals with prostitutes pg. 133 Para 7
  • It exemplifies the commonness of prostitution
  • Ochre – a golden-yellowish colour pg. 133 Para 8
  • Many walls in houses are of this colour
  • Furtive – trying to avoid attention because of an incident or guilt pg. 134 Para 1
  • People in the book tend to look furtive
  • Goreh – term used for British people pg. 134 Para 7
  • It is almost always used when talking about a British person
  • Incessantly – to continue without any interruption pg. 138 Para 1
  • Unfamiliar word


Page 4.2

vocabulary simplifier3
Vocabulary Simplifier
  • Delegations– entrusting something to another person pg. 138 Para 2
  • Upper class men tend to do this to lower people such as Gulbaru giving Gurdial that deed
  • Gawped– to stare in a stupid way 139 Para 4
  • Descriptive word for peasants
  • Envisaged– to contemplate or conceive an image of the future pg. 141 Para 5
  • Unfamiliar word
  • Beteh– a term used to describe an affectionate boy pg. 150 Para 3
  • This word was used many times to describe people like Jeevan and Gurdial
  • Forlornly – Appearing sad or lonely because deserted or abandoned pg. 156 Para 4
  • Unfamiliar word
  • Compatriot– A citizen/national of a country
  • A good word to use besides fellow citizen
  • Interminable – Endless
  • It is used to describe things metaphorically in the text


Page 4.3

scene selector2
Scene Selector


Page 5.1

scene selector3
Scene Selector


Page 5.2

scene selector4
Scene Selector


Page 5.3

discussion director3
Discussion Director
  • Why is Bissen Singh considered as ‘traitorous dog’?
  • Bissen Singh is considered to be a traitorous dog because he fought for the Goreh (White People) for the money
  • How does Hans Raj manipulate?
  • Hans Raj manipulates Jeevan by using the story of his mother against him.
  • How have Pritam’s father and mother impacted Pritam? How have they affected the death in Pritam’s eyes?


Page 6 .1

discussion director4
Discussion Director
  • In this chapter, there is a mentioning of Pritam’s mother as a prostitute, and his father as a rich merchant, who is friends with
  • Why is Hans Raj never around?
  • The book constantly refers to random meetings of the Goreh and Hans Raj. This implies that he is working with the Goreh
  • Peace is mentioned in the text as ‘nonsense made by politicians’. What are Pritam’s thoughts to this, and how does he act towards this?
  • Pritam’s thoughts towards the ‘peace’ is different to peace politicians desire. He thinks justice and equal rights makes the peace. He also believes the solution to obtain this peace is to kill the oppressors, although in fact this will only result in war between the 2 factions


Page 6.2

summariser key points
Summariser - key points…
  • Udham is about to be hung accepts it
  • Jeevan has turned against Bissen and Gurdial
  • Pritam and Hans Raj lies have brainwashed Jeevan into a violent delinquent
  • Their gang have put a malicious poster on a clock tower out in public challenging all to a fight
  • Hans Raj talks of a time to strike in the future.
  • A group of seven complain to Dr Satyapal about their living conditions until they are interrupted by;
  • Pritam Throws a rock and breaks one of Dr Satyapal's windows and accuses him of not doing enough to stop the abuse of the British
  • Pritam tells the crowd, that he has gathered by his insolence towards Dr Satyapal, that on Vaisakhi day there will be a revolution
  • Hans Raj appears once again to support his gang, he tells them that Ghandi will not be allowed into Amritsar


Page 7.1

summariser key points1
Summariser- key points…
  • It is clear that Hans Raj is a part of the Brotherhood, sent to start up more and more cells like Pritam's - what he gains from doing so is still unclear
  • Pritam's gang notice that there are no British soldiers in sight, telling us that something is amiss
  • In front of Pritam's mother’s brothel, He kills a drunkard by slitting his eye with a knife - showing us how much anger that has corrupted his very being.
  • Jeevan's faith in the gang weakens only to be, yet again, taken advantage of by Hans Raj and strengthening his desire to free mother India. To the point that he believes that Hans Raj is 'always right'.
  • Doctors Satyapal and Kitchlew are to be deported by Miles Irving, however they have brought company who're complicating things.
  • Superintendent of Police, Mr Rehill plans to distract the men by inviting them to lunch and sneaking away with the two doctors.
  • Plan fails as Lieutenant-colonel Smith seems to be conspiring with Hans Raj and allows the crowd the doctors brought to spread news of their deportation around the city immediately.


Page 7.2

summariser key points2
Summariser- key points…
  • First violent defiance by the Punjabi for having their leaders deported.
  • Large battle occurs on the railway bridges that connect Amritsar and the British's territory with 30 dead.
  • Pritam's gang slaughter the other innocent British people who had nothing to do with the past events.
  • Ram Singh dies while trying to take a life by the hands of Zardad Khan.
  • Jeevan is resolution is wavering after seeing Pritam smash open heads with a club.
  • Once the gang had rested, they were ordered to go out and fight again- this time Pritam, noticing Jeevan's insecurity, orders him to set alight the managers of the national bank (or the post master generals).
  • Udham is at his last moments, waiting to be hung, he dwells upon what happened at the Jallianwalla Bagh Massacre, how felt at that time and what he'd learnt. Udham also tells us that, Amritsar , the City of Ghosts haunts his dreams and that he will soon be one of them, his need to be set free by death supresses all his other killing desires and allows to finally accept his fate.


Page 7.3

the soldier

The Soldier



By Cindy, Lyn, Vevaan & Michelle 10B



  • How the war has effected Bissen mentally, emotionally and physically
  • Post traumatic stress
  • Present times – flashes back to Bissen’s memories – Neuve De Chappelle
  • Bissen’s homesickness & perspective on the conflict
  • Bringing the reader into the eyes of The Solider, Bissen
  • Watching his best friends die & leaving the love of his life behind
  • Religion – dedication and faith in God
  • Bissen’s character and personality – determined and optimistic
  • Bissen comes back to the post office, as he had every other day in hopes for something from Lillian.

Key Points to remember

1. Bissen has a very optimistic and determined persona.

2. The war still affects Bissen, even years after. (This infers Post Traumatic Stress)

3. Bissen believed that he was not 'fighting a white man's war', but rather 'fighting to keep the world free' (relates back to his mature and optimistic personality)

4. Even in those times of war, the Sikh's still believed in their religion and that 'God watches over us wherever we go'.


Why is Bissen still

haunted by the war

  • Reminds him of his failure
  • Thoughts about Lillian bring him back to the war
  • Post Traumatic Stress
  • Guilt of killing innocent people

"[The Punjabis] are like dogs that shit in their own basket and roll around in it-" Do you agree with Bissen's opinion? Why?

Quote from page 198 – 5th paragraph

- Attempt to make peace using violence- Doesn't affect the British- Hurting themselves


What did you learn about Bissen's past

- Painful memories- Experiences hardships

What was the most traumatic experience for Bissen

Why hadn't Bissen let the German soldier live

- Comrades dying- Injuries

- Heat of battle- Survival- Contradicting his religion


Why does Bissen's grandmother refer to God as the 'wife'

Why do you think the Indians would leave their homeland in order to fight in the war

- relates ideas of God to human gender differences

- honour of battle- bribes/threats- beliefs- for the good of Mother India


Important Quotes and Explanations

  • ‘…here we are in this man-made hell and God will forgive us our small acts of sin.’ - Bhan Singh – Page 202 10th line
  • ‘However I am killed,’ replied Bhan Singh, ‘it will be here, fighting for these people so that they can continue to keep our motherland in shackles. Or perhaps I’ll die running away? Wherever it is, it won’t be for the good of my own country.’ - Page 204 2nd last line
  • ‘…here I am fighting a white man’s war.’ – Bhan Singh – Page 203 12th line from bottom
  • ‘… he found yet more broken and twisted bodies, lying in the stinking filth of an exploded latrine. German, Englishmen, and Indians, covered in shit, not glory, and all equal in death.’ – Page 213 last paragraph
  • War – something that they are obliged to do; a hell they were forced to enter
  • Everyone is equal and in the end people do not ask for your social class or caste before killing you
  • Won’t benefit their own country

‘ About five feet from where they were crouched, Private James Burton, aged eighteen years, tried to stop crying.

  • ‘Our father who art in Heaven…’ he sobbed.’ - Page 206 4th line
  • Reciting Catholic prayers to a deceased Sikh
  • ‘There would be other Jiwan Sings – lots of them. The trick was not to become one too.’
  • Page 209 – end of 2nd paragraph
  • - Fighting not for India, or the British, but rather for himself

‘Death came swiftly to those who stood still in the heat of battle... as he recalled the teachings of the Gurus. Every man is your brother, every woman your sister.’

- Page 213 – 2nd last paragraph

‘It was the screaming that snapped him back to reality. Opening his eyes again, Bissen saw that he had speared his brother through the heart.’ – Page 213 last paragraph

- Going against his own religion and blaming it on the heat of battle



  • Who is this chapter based on?
  • Bissen

What time period is this chapter set in?

  • The chapter is introduced in 1919 however there is a flashback to 1915 during the war.

Name one person who dies in this chapter.

Jiwan, the little boy, Gobar Singh Negi, Lieutenant Colonel Ernest Wodehouse (aka the British officer)


What is Bissen’s perspective on the war?

That they are not fighting a white man’s war, but they are fighting to keep the world in peace.


Who was involved in the war? (There are three countries specifically in this chapter)

Germany, England and India

part 5 city of ghosts the journey

Part 5 CITY OF GHOSTS - The Journey

Shine Tran

Chi Vu

Ilam Nguyen

Karen Chow


Chi Vu


Day before Vaisakhi: Gurdial contemplates about the task set out for him by Gulbaru. To find the most precious thing in all of India.

  • Meanwhile, Darshana and the Chinaman plot Sohniand Gulbaru’s death.
  • Heera sees the opportunity to use Gurdial’s task to save Sohni.
  • Takes Gurdial on a journey of enlightenment.
  • He meets people who all have differing definitions of the most precious thing in all of India,ignites confusion and frustration.
  • Soon realises, each person favours their own mirage, their wants and needs.
  • Heera brings Gurdial back to the market place at the exact time that they first met, the day before the deadline of Gurdial’s task
  • Guardial goes to Gulbaru with a mirage of the nagmani: precious element found in the king cobra.
  • Gurdial was able to fool Gulbaru with the false promise of a son Darshana would bear.
  • To keep his son, Gulbaruis told that he must save his daughter first.
  • He arrives in time to save Sohni, but Heera was waiting
  • She chokes the Chinaman, erupts Darshana’s stomach and lets a vicious dog loose on Gulbaru.
  • Places Sohni in Gurdial’s care, Heera leaves, promising to return.
scene selector5
Scene Selector

Shine Tran


The journey(Page 260- 264.)

  • This part depicts the rare brutality of Heera, Sohni’s deceased mother.
  • After hearing about Darshana’s plan to kill Sohni, Heerashows up to prevent her daughters death
  • The Chinaman knew what was coming, acceptance.
  • “The Chinaman smiled. ‘It must come to us all,’ he said sadly. ‘I have lived a long life - I look forward to the next.’” pg 260, para one.
  • Clenching of her fists was all it took to kill the Chinaman.
  • Heera cunningly plans out her revenge, involving Gurdial to lure in Gulbaru.
  • Gulburuis easily influenced, tricked by magic and a promise of a very sought after baby boy.
  • Immediately after gulbaru’s arrival at the scene, he rushes to tell Darshana of the good news
  • He realises Heerawas there when she spoke up. “‘Like a maggot-ridden mango , evil eats at us from within,’ she continued. 'Behold the fruit of your loins...’” pg 262, para six.
  • The churning in Darshanna’s stomach becomes more and more violent, making it excruciatingly painful, her stomach then gets ripped open by hundred and hundreds of rats, a befitting death.
  • Gulburu attempts to again kill his first wife, Heera, but to no avail.
  • She sedates him and releases a dog she has been restraining since the start of this scene, so that it may be by the fangs of a dog that kills him just like how he fed her body parts to the street dogs not many years ago.

What was the significance of the rats exploding from Darshana’s stomach?

  • What does the Nagmani signify?
  • What was shown through Darshana‘s avidity to have a boy?
  • What was seen through the way Darshana, the Chinaman and Gulbaru dies?
  • What can be inferred through Gulbaru’s severe actions when he realises that Sohni is no longer a virgin?

Vaishaki: Page 225, Gurdial: ‘On the eve of Vaishaki, he was about to fail’

Solitary: Pagee 225, Gurdial: ‘A sad, solitary, pathetic failure’

Tumult: Page 225, Gurdial: ‘Revolutionary tumult gathered place’

Heeding: Page 225, Gurdial: ‘Heeding her warnings’

Cavorting: Page 227, Darshana: ‘Your daughter has been cavorting with the orphan’

Tranquillity: Page 223, Gurdial: ‘Feeling of tranquillity that had come over him’

Acrid: Page 234, Gurdial: ‘Bitter, acrid taste hit his senses’

Perplexed: Full of differences, confusion/bewilderment

Rajah: Page 241, Irula/snake catchers: ‘The rajah had all the wealth in the world’

Intellect, Resplendent, Infanticide: ***

Threshold: page 265, Sohni: ‘see her father at a threshold’

  • Vaishaki: A festival for the 2nd month of the Hindu Calendar
  • Solitary: To lack companionship
  • Tumult: Violent agitation/noisy disturbance
  • Heeding: To pay close attention to
  • Cavorting: Play boisterously
  • Tranquillity: Untroubled/peaceful state
  • Acrid: Strong/sharp/harsh in tone
  • Perplexed: Full of differences, confusion/bewilderment
  • Rajah: Prince or King of India
  • Intellect: Knowledge, ability
  • Resplendent: Have great beauty
  • Infanticide: Murder infant
  • Threshold: Starting point for new experiences
Part 6
  • The Soldier and the


  • Bissen Singh is taken to a hospital ward after injury in the Neuve Chappele battle.
  • There he is introduced to Lillian and has an unconditional love for her despite meeting her for a short period of time.
  • Bissen is taken away and lives with Lillian and uncle Bertie where he has his beard and hair shaved as part of his cultural identity.
  • However Bissen is forced depart due to the workmen discovering his secret.
s cene s elector
Scene Selector

Pg 302: Para 2 and 3: Appeal to the past, how people can’t marry other people of a different background: “Being together will be difficult(Lillian).....I know, replied Bissen, I am Indian....”

Pg 323: Para 1: The first time in Bissen’s life that he had encountered snow: “He had never seen snow before: when he picked it up, if froze his hands before melting away into nothingness....”

Pg 275: Para1: Description of Lillian: “...eyes were bright blue, shimmering like the waters that surrounded the Golden Temple in Amritsar.”

Pg 336:Para 3: Shows how positive things do not last and that Bissen’s departure is inevitable: “How quickly things had changed. He told himseld, from bliss to depair. He closed his eyes and thought about Lillian’s smile as the van took him away from her.”

Pg 285: Para 4: Demonstrates that Bissen had feelings for Lillian: “There was something about Lillian-a warmth and tenderness- that he desired...”

Pg 305: Para 3: An example that Indians did not want to contribute to the white men’s war: “We had no freedom to begin with. We were merely their chattels- the same dogs who ruin our country...”

d iscussion d irector
Discussion Director
  • What would you feel like if you were deported to a place that wasn’t really your home during a war?
  • Does Bissen really see England as his new 'home' or is it just his love for Lillian?
  • Why does Bissen sign up for the army? Is it patriotism?

What effects does war have on Bissen?

Bissen faces shellshock, nightmares and is dependent on opium for pain relief.

  • Why are there stigmas against multicultural couples?

Because of traditions and because of change which many people dislike.

  • Where would it be suitable to use the term ‘Bhai’ to address people.
  • Where in England was Bissen hospitalised?
part 7 jallianwalla bagh amritsar

Part 7 JallianwallaBagh, Amritsar

By Brian, David, Jimmy, Vincent, Damien Phoo 10B

summariser damien phoo
Summariser(Damien Phoo)
  • Miles Irving leaves office in exhaustion
  • Lieutenant Colonel Smith gets informed about the situation by Rehill, Smith hints at massacre, talks of things that needed to be done to ‘keep our empire together’
  • Gurdial leaves Sohni to seek for Jeevan
  • Gurdial gives Bissen the letter he has been waiting for
  • Jeevan talks to priest about his actions
  • Heera shows Jeevan his destiny, Jeevan accepts it willingly
  • Bissen gets dragged by friend to Vaisakhi
  • British rock up at Vaisakhi and start shooting everyone
  • Bissen and Jeevan die, Jeevan takes hit and kills Pritam with him
  • Leads to prologue
discussion director jimmy tran
Discussion Director(Jimmy Tran)
  • Was death the only way Jeevan could forgive himself?
  • Why would Pritam lead a revolt?
  • Could the British have prevented the revolt?
  • Could the British attack have just been a mistake or was Hans Raj involved?
  • Would the British have done the same if the rebelions were white people?