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KNEC KCSE English Paper 2 Question Paper 2015

KNEC KCSE English Paper 2 Question Paper / 2015 KCSE Starehe Boys Centre Mock

2015 KCSE Starehe Boys Centre Mock

English Paper 2


Read the passage below and answer the questions that follow.


Read the passage below and then answer the questions that follow.

For Africans living abroad, nothing is more irritating than the constant diet of negative news on Africa. The only silver lining is that Africa is way down the list of importance for the Western media. Most of the time Africa is ignored but when it does not make it into the newspapers, radio or TV, then it is always portrayed as sinking in corruption, wars, famine and disease. If you set out to find a positive story on Africa, you may have wait until your grandchildren have grown old.

What is more unfortunate is that whereas the rest of the world is divided into nations, Africa is lumped into one big sorry mass. A civil war in a tiny country in Africa elicits screaming headlines such as “Africa returns to barbarity.” Civil wars in Europe are not European civil wars but civil wars in Bosnia, Serbia and so on. No one bothers to mention that out of Africa’s 54 countries, only two may be engaged in civil wars. That means that 52 countries are peaceful. But the impression you get from the Western media is that all of Africa is at war with itself.

The same goes for diseases, especially Aids. Hardly does a week go by without the ‘experts ’from the West predicting how Africa will be wiped out in fifty years’ time. If all the predictions made about the impact of Aids had been correct, most African countries would have been entirely depopulated by now.
According to the Western media, Africa is corrupt. All of Africa, all the time. It is interesting to note that in America, for example, only the executives of a given company are said to be corrupt while all African leaders are seen as being irredeemably corrupt.

The point being put across is that Africa is guilty unless proven innocent. Western journalists assigned to cover Africa are in most cases the most junior and the least experienced in the organization. They are given this version of a ‘Hopeless continent’ for so long that when they land in any African country, they immediately set out to confirm the prejudices. And you can always find what you are looking for .
The situation is similar to the search for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. In Africa, Western journalists set out to find corruption, decay and mismanagement. And if they cannot find it, they will invent it on the basis that ‘it must be somewhere.’

The causes of this generalized negative view of Africa are complex. When you confront Western journalists, they deny that their view of Africa is prejudiced. They are probably telling the truth because they report what they see – but they see what they want to see. And what they want to see, subconsciously is a version of backward, primitive and uncivilized Africa.

So while we feel irritated and even angered by the Western media’s portrayal of Africa, we must remember that many journalists cannot help but see Africa the way they are programmed to do. The only way this changes is if the programming is changed. But how do you go about doing so?
The first step is to create space for dialogue between the Western media and Africans. It is during such discussions that Africans will be able to tell their side of the story. If this happens, then the Western media will see Africa as we do – a glorious continent full of promise but going through a rough time at present.


(a) What is the likelihood of finding a positive story in Africa? (2 marks)

(b) Why are Bosnia and Serbia mentioned? (3 marks)

(c) Why is the word ‘experts’ in the third paragraph put within quotation marks? (2 marks)

(d) Rewrite the following sentence to begin: Had…. (1 mark)
“If all the predictions made about the impact of Aids had been correct, most African countries would have been depopulated by now.”

(e) According to the passage, is Africa more corrupt than America? Explain your answer. (3 marks)

(f) Give two reasons why African stories are mainly assigned to the most junior and inexperienced journalists. (4 marks)

(g) How can we tell that the author is an African? (2 marks)

(h) Explain the meaning of the following expressions as used in the passage: (3 marks)
(i) silver lining
(ii) sorry
(iii) irredeemably

 20 marks

2.LITERATURE (25 Marks)

Read the following extract and answer the questions that follow.


Read the excerpt below then answer the questions that follow.

GUESTS: (loudly):
– Have you heard? The Grand Duke is back! But the Princes are against him.
– They say the Shah of Persia has lent him a great army to restore order in Grusinia.
– But how is that possible? The Shah of Persia is the enemy…
– The enemy of Grusinia, you donkey, not the enemy of the Grand Duke!
– In any case, the war’s over, so our soldiers are coming back.
GRUSHA: drops a cake pan. GUESTS help her pick up the cake.
AN OLD WOMAN (to Grusha): Are you feeling bad? It’s just excitement about dear Jussup.
Sit down and rest a while, my dear. (GRUSHA staggers.)
GUESTS: Now everything’ll be the way it was. Only the taxes’ll go up because now we’ll have
to pay for the war.
GRUSHA (weakly): Did someone say the soldiers are back?
A MAN: I did.
GRUSHA: It can’t be true.
FIRST MAN (to a woman): Show her the shawl. We bought it from a soldier. It’s from Persia.
GRUSHA (looking at the shawl): They are here.
(she gets up, takes a step, kneels down in prayer, takes the silver cross and chain out of her blouse and kisses it.)
MOTHER -IN-LAW(while the guests silently watching GRUSHA):
What’s the matter with you? Aren’t you going to look after our guests? What’s all this city nonsense got to do with us?
GUESTS (resuming conversation while GRUSHA remains in prayer):
-You can buy Persian saddles from the soldiers too. Though many want crutches in exchange for them.
– The leaders on one side can win a war; the soldiers on both sides lose it.
-Anyway, the war’s over. It’s something they can’t draft you anymore.
The dying man sits bolt upright in bed. He listens.
-What we need is two weeks of good weather.
-Our pear trees are hardly bearing a thing this year.
MOTHER- IN –LAW (offering cakes): Have some more cakes and welcome! There are more!
The MOTHER-IN-LAW goes to the bedroom with the empty cake pans. Unaware of the dying man, she is bending down to pick up another tray when he begins to talk in a hoarse voice.
PEASANT: How many more cakes are you going to stuff down their throats? D’you think I can shit money?
The MOTHER-IN-LAW starts, stares at him aghast, while he climbs out from behind the mosquito net.
FIRST WOMAN (talking kindly to GRUSHA in the next room):
Has the young wife got someone at the front?
A MAN: It’s good news that they’re on their way home, huh?
PEASANT: Don’t stare at me like that! Where’s this wife you’ve saddled me with?
Receiving no answer, he climbs out of bed and in his nightshirt staggers into the other room. Trembling, she follows him with the cake pan.
GUESTS: (seeing him and shrieking): Good God! Jussup!
Everyone leaps up in alarm. The women rush to the door. GRUSHA, still on her knees, turns round and stares at the man.
PEASANT: A funeral supper! You’d enjoy that, wouldn’t you? Get out before I throw you out!
(As the guests stampede from the house, gloomily to GRUSHA): I’ve upset the apple cart, huh? (Receiving no answer, he turns round and takes a cake from the pan which his mother is holding)


(a) Place this excerpt in its immediate context. (4 marks)

( b) What led to Grusha’s marriage to Jussup? (3 marks)

( c) Give two character traits of the PEASANT. (4 marks)

( d) From this excerpt, what would you say are the effects of war? Your answer should be in point form. (2 marks)

( e) With reference to the rest of the play show other effects of war. (3 marks)

( f) Earlier on the Monk refers to the guests as ‘wedding and funeral’ guests. Explain. (3 marks)

( g) Explain the meaning of the following phrases as used in the passage.
Has the young wife got someone at the front? (1 mark)

Though many want crutches in exchange for them. (2 marks)

(iii) The enemy of Grusinia , you donkey, not the enemy of the Grand Duke! (2 marks)

( h) Re-write the following in reported speech.
‘Did someone say the soldiers are back?’ (1 mark)

 25 marks


Read the Oral Narrative below and answer the questions that follow.


Read the following proverbs and answer the questions after each.

a) Proverb: Don’t judge a book by its cover.

(i) Explain the meaning of this proverb. {2 marks}

(ii) In which category would you classify this proverb and why? {2 marks}

(iii) Giver another proverb which has a similar message to the one above. {1 mark}

b) Proverb: Meosh Osina Masali. (Maasai)
Translation: Poverty cannot be hit with sampling.

(i) Explain the meaning of this proverb. {2 marks}

(ii) What type of audience would be appropriate for this proverb and why? {2 marks}

(iii) Comment on the attitude towards work reflected in this proverb. {2 marks}

c) Read the following riddle and answer the questions.
Riddle: Who looks like a greasy buffalo?
Answer: The initiate

(i) How would you classify this riddle? {1 mark}

(ii) Identify an aspect of style used in the riddle. {2 marks}

(iii) Describe a social activity that this community practices. {2 marks}

(iv) State the first stage in the riddling process and state its function. {2 marks}

(d) State two differences between riddles and proverbs. {2 marks}

 20 marks

4.GRAMMAR (15 Marks)

Answer the following questions.


(a) Use the correct form of the word given in brackets to fill in the blank space. (3 marks)

Peter Michuki’s death is an ……………………………….. (repair) loss to the nation.
Correct all the ………………………. (spell) words.
Poor leadership always ………………………. (stable) the economy of a country.

(b) Rewrite the following sentences according to the instructions given after each. (4 marks)
I cannot decide what to eat. (Begin: What…….)
The ministry of Education has warned all principals. (Rewrite in Passive)
The bridge had been weakened by successive storms and was no longer safe.
(Begin Weakened…………………………..)
The little girl dared to tell her mother the truth. (Rewrite the sentence and supply a suitable question tag)

(c) Write two sentences to convey two different meanings of each. (2 marks)

(d) Explain the meaning of the following idioms. (2 marks)
Bite the bullet.
A dog in a manger.

(e) Replace the underlined word in the following sentences with a phrasal verb which
begins with the words in brackets to convey the same meaning. (3 marks)
(i) Don’t let the visitor stand at the door. Invite her to come into the house.(ask)

(ii) If you don’t know the meaning of a word, you can find it in a dictionary.(look)

(iii) Please ensure that everyone gets something to eat. (see)

(f) Read the following sentence and give two meanings.
Simiyu loves chicken more than Janet. (1 mark)

 15 marks

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