The Bear

. The Bear

Q.1.    Describe the quarrel between Smirnove and Popova.

Or      Why does  Popova call Smirnove Bear and Bourbon?

Or      Why does Smirnov demand of her and why? 1997

Or      what is the attitude of towards Smirnove?

 

Smirnov is a landowner and retired army officer. Nicholai, Popova’s late husband, had owed him a sum of 120 rubbles before he died. He comes to Popova for the repayment of the loan. She is in her mourning condition and does not deal with money matter. She says that she has no ready cash that time. Moreover, her steward will pay him when he comes from the town.

Smirnov has his own problems. He has to pay interest on a mortgage the next day. If he fails to pay, they will take his estate. Secondly, his debtors avoid him on one excuse or the other. He is filled with rage and insists on getting payment. Popova says that she cannot pay him that day. They both lose temper and assume hard attitude to each other. She forbids him to get inside. But Smirnov does not budge at all. He prefers to stay at her place even if it is for a week or for a year.

Popova is in a great fix. She does not know to deal with such a strong headed person. He becomes just like a rough or ill-mannered person. He shouts and threatens Luka, her servant. He criticizes women. When it all becomes intolerable for her, she calls him a boor, a bear and a monster for many times due to his rough and ill manners. The title bear is named after her word. They both challenge to fight a duel with pistols. Popova does not know how to fire. There is turning point when he tells him he how to fire. During this training they fell in love with each other. 276

 

Q.2.   Explain the life/feelings of Popova after the death of her            husband?

Or      what kind state of mind is Popova in? 1997

Or      Why does Popova shut herself in the four walls of the house?

 

Popova is a young and beautiful with roses in her cheeks. She becomes widow at the prime of her life. Her husband was a rich land lord of Russia. She loves her husband very much. When the play opens, Popova is in deep mourning. She has fixed her eyes on the photograph of her late husband. She has mourned the death of her husband for seven months. Luka, her servant, wants her to come into lime light and enjoy life but she does not heed to Luka’s advice. She declares ‘My life is already at an end. He is in his grave, and I have buried myself between four walls. We are both dead.‘ She feels that life has lost all its meaning for her since her husband died. ‘Let his ghost see how well I love him.’

She loves her husband even though he was unfair, cruel and unfaithful. She professes her sincerity and loyalty to her husband by saying, My love will die out with me, only when this poor heart ceases to beat. Nickolas, her husband, deceived and quarrelled with her. He neglected her for weeks. She claims that she loves him in his death and will never forget him though he wasted her money for his own enjoyments. She says that she will not marry anybody till the last moment of her life. She further says as: “This best of men shamelessly deceived me at every step! After his death I found in his desk a whole draw full of love letters.” Despite the shameful acts of her husband, she claims that she loves him truly. (Words 270)

 

Q.3    What are the complaints of Popova against her husband?

Or      Why does Popova condemn her husband?

Or      Write a note on popova’s married life.

 

Popova is a young and beautiful with roses in her cheeks. She becomes widow at the prime of her life. Her husband was a rich land lord of Russia. She loves her husband very much. She is a loving wife but she is not satisfied with her husband. In her own words she is a good virtuous little wife. She condemns him and has many complaints against him. She says that her husband was unfair, cruel and unfaithful to her. He always deceived and quarrelled with her. She says to Smirnove, I gave him my youth, my happiness and my fortune but this best of men deceived me at every step. He was thankless and satisfied his animal spirits. As a young imaginative woman she loves him sincerely and passionately. But he was not a worthy husband. He led his life like an irresponsible foolish playboy. He made fun of her feelings. He spent her wealth lavishly. He used to leave Popova alone for weeks. She could not enjoy the pleasures of matrimonial life. She says, “He used to make love to other women and betray me before my very eyes.” She further says as: “This best of men shamelessly deceived me at every step! After his death I found in his desk a whole draw full of love letters.” Despite the shameful acts of her husband, she claims that she loves him truly. (Words 234)

 

Q.4.   Is Popova true to her profession of love for her dead husband?

Or      Popova catches our attention by not what she says but by what she does. comment.   2008

Or      Popova makes a mere show as a mourner. Discuss.

Or      The Bear shows the hypocracy of human beings. Discuss.

Or      Discuss Popova as an unreal and fake prude.

 

            The Bear is a satire on man’s hypocritical nature. Popova seems not to be true to her professions of love for her dead husband. She pretends and protests to be a true lover of her late husband. But she does not do what she says. It seems as if she were mourning for not enjoying the happiness of matrimonial life. She proved to be an unreal and fake prude by her false claims of being true to her husband even after his death.

When the play opens, she is in deep mourning. She has fixed her eyes on the photograph of her late husband. She declares ‘My life is already at an end. He is in his grave, and I have buried myself between four walls. We are both dead.’ She feels that life has lost all its meaning for her since her husband died. ‘Let his ghost see how well I love him.’

Nickolas deceived and quarrelled with her. He was unfair, cruel and unfaithful. He neglected her for weeks. He wasted her money for his own enjoyments. She professes, besides these  that her love will die out only with her death.

Popova protests love too much but changes her attitude just when Smirnov comes in her way. At first sight, he falls in love with her and offers to marry her. After a little show of anger, she accepts the offer because he is rich and strong masculine character. She can enjoy her missed matrimonial bliss. This attitude of Popova also brings the attention of the reader towards her. 261

 

Q.5.   What does Luka Advise to Popova? 1999 or Give Character       Sketch Of Luka

 

Luka is an old faithful servant of Popova. When the play opens, we see him as an adviser. He is experienced. He is faithful and sympathetic. He takes care of Popova. He shows concern for her.  He advises Popova to stop mourning for her late husband. She is young and beautiful. She must come out and mix up with the neighbours and the army officers. She must enjoy her life. He gives his own example to her. He tells that his wife died when her time came. He grieved over her and wept for a month. He advises her to give up her isolation and resume her social life. She does not heed to Luka’s advice.

At the arrival of Smirnov he is in a fix. Luka provides food for laughter. His reactions, exclamations, his fears and worries about the new situation are a source of enjoyment for us. He is to obey his lady and he is intimidated by Smirnqv. He finds himself on the horns of a dilemma. He obeys Popova but he is helpless before Smirnov. Luka at once turns into a defender at the prospect of the duel. He begs Smirnov to leave the place but does not succeed with him. He is much worried about the duel. He cares for his mistress too much. He raises hue and cry to protect Popova. He calls the servants who rush with their respective tools to save their lady. He collects them to lace Smimov. But they are all surprised to see the couple in love. 258

 

Q.6    Discuss the play “The Bear” as a farce  2009 I

Or   The play “The Bear” is a farce full of noisy boisterous and          laughter. Discuss

Or      Write a short note on the comic elements in the play “The        Bear”.

Or      Bring out the ridiculous behavior of the characters.

 

“The Bear” is a farce full of noisy boisterous laughter. The humour lies in the strange behaviour, actions and witty remarks of both Popova and Smirnov. Both are serious as well as non-serious. Both are obstinate as well as yielding. Both are ridiculous, funny and sentimental.

Smjrnov can mimic any situation. His way of talking, mimicry and pointed remarks provoked laughter. His way of entering the house is very enjoyable. His noisy remarks and orders to Luka excite laughter. Popova says that she is not the pleasure of being either your husband or your fiancé, so please do not make scenes.” When she gets angry, he bows before her and calls her “poetic creature”. Again he calls her gunpowder for her fiery nature which excites laughter.

Popova is also equally a source of laughter. In the beginning, she seems to be cherishing the memory of her dead husband. In the end, we see her in the arms of her enemy. She accepts Smirnov’s challenge to fight a duel. Then she tells him that she does not know how to fire a pistol. This thing provokes laughter. Once she rebukes Smirnov in these words “Do you think I am afraid of you because you have large fists and bull’s throat,” She calls him Bear, Monster and Bourbon and then she falls in his arms. The expected end of the play, the duel fight, also proves farce

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