UNEB UCE Literature Past Papers for Year 2007

UNEB UCE Literature Past Papers for Year 2007

Uganda National Examinations Board Past Questions


Sub – section (i)

Choose one of the passages 1 to 4, read it carefully and then answer the questions following it as concisely as possible.

Either 1. WOLE SOYINKA: Jero’s Metamorphosis.

JERO: (Holds out his arms). It is no ghost, brother Chume. It is no apparition that stands before you. Assure yourself that you are well again and suffer no more from hallucinations. It is I, your old beloved master the prophet Jeroboam. Immaculate Jero. Articulate Hero of Christ’s Crusade.

CHUME: (He stands stock still). Commot here before I break your head.

JERO: Break my head? What good will my broken head do you?

CHUME: It will make compensation for all de thing I done suffer for your hand. I dey warn you now, commot.

JERO: Suffer at my hands? You, brother Chume? Suffer at my hands.

CHUME: You tell the police say I craze. Because God expose you and your cunny cunny and I shout am for the whole world………

JERO: Brother Chume………..

CHUME: I no be your brother, no call me your bother. De kin’ brother wey you fit be Na the brotherhood of Cain and Abel. The brotherhood of Jacob and Esau. Eat my meat and tief my patrimony……..

JERO: You do me great injustice, brother Chume.

CHUME: Na so? And de one you do me Na justice? To lock man inside lunatic asylum because you wan’ cover up your Wayo. You be Wayo man plain and simple. Wayo prophet! (Warning up) look, I dey warn you, commit here if you like your head! (Advancing.)

JERO: You raised your hand once against the anointed of the lord,

Remember what it cost you.

CHUME: Which anointed of the Lord? You?

JERO: You raised a cutlass against me brother Chume, but I forgave you.

CHUME: Dat ne forgiveness? Three month inside lunatic asylum!

Na dat den call forgiveness for your bible?


a) Where does the scene take place?

b) What has led to the scene above?

c) What does the scene reveal about Chume’s feelings towards Jero?

d) How does Jero eventually win Chume over?

Or 2. WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE: Romeo and Juliet

FRIAR LAWRENCE: Holy saint Francis, what a change is here!

Is Rosaline, that thou didst love so dear,

So soon forsaken? Young men’s love then lies

Not truly in their hearts, but in their eyes.

Jesu Maria, what a deal of brine

Hath washed thy sallow cheeks for Rosaline

How much salt water thrown away in waste

To season love, that of it doth not taste!

The sun not yet thy sighs from heaven clears,

Thy old groans yet ring in mine ancient ears;

Lo here upon thy cheek the stain doth sit

Of an old tear that is not washed off yet.

If ever thou wast thyself, and these woes thine,

Thou and these woes were all for Rosaline.

And art thou changed? Pronounce this sentence then

Women may fall, when there’s no strength in men.

ROMEO: Thou chid’st me often for loving Rosaline.

FRAIR LAWRENCE: For doting not for loving, pupil mine.

ROMEO: And bad’st me bury love.

FRIAR LAWRENCE: Not in a grave,

To lay one in, another out to have.

ROMEO: I pray thee chide me not, her I love now

Doth grace for grace, and love for love allow.

The other did not so.

FRIAR LAWRENCE: O she knew well

Thy love did read by rote that could not spell.

But come young waverer, come go with me.

In one respect I’ll thy assistant be;

For this alliance may so happy prove.

To turn household’s rancor to pure love.

ROMEO: O let us hence, I stand on sudden haste.

FRAIR LAWRENCE: Wisely and slow. They stumble that run fast.


a) What has Romeo just told Friar Lawrence?

b) Why does Friar Lawrence disagree with Romeo in the passage?

c) Give reasons why Friar Lawrence eventually agrees to Romeo’s request.

d) What happens to Romeo later in the play?


The dark was almost in and Juma’s fire threw shadows on the brush walls when the whisper came in, passed from mouth to mouth. “The father is coming – the priest is coming.” The men uncovered their heads and stepped back from the door and the women gathered their shawls about their faces and cast down their eyes. Kino and Juana Tomas, his brother, stood up. The priest came in a graying again man with an old skin and a young sharp eye. Children, he considered these people and he treated them like children.

“Kino,” he said softly,”thou art named after a great man and a great father of the church.” He made it sound like a benediction. “Thy namesake tamed the desert and sweetened the minds of thy people, didst thou know that? It is in the books.”

Kino looked quickly down at Coyotito’s head, where he hung on Juana’s hip. Some day, his mind said, that boy would know what things were in the books and what things were not. The music had gone out of Kino’s head, but now, thinly, slowly, the melody of the morning, the music of evil, of the enemy sounded, but it was faint and weak. And Kino looked at his neighbors to see who might have brought this song in.

But the priest was speaking again, “it has come to me that thou hast found a great fortune, a great pearl.”

Kino opened his hand and held it out and the priest gasped a little at the size and beauty of the pearl. And then he said, “I hope thou wilt remember to give thanks, my son, to Him who has given thee this treasure and to pray for guidance in the future.”

Kino nodded dumbly and it was Juana who spoke softly. “We will, father. And we will be married now. Kino has said so,” she looked at the neighbors for confirmation and they nodded their heads solemnly.

The priest said, “it is pleasant to see that your first thoughts are good thoughts. God bless you, my children.” He turned and left quietly and the people let him through.

But Kino’s hand had closed tightly on the pearly again and he was glancing about suspiciously, for the evil song was in his ears, shrilling against the music of the pearl.


a) What happens just before this passage?

b) What shows that the priest is interested in Kino’s pearl?

c) Give five human weaknesses that the author shows in the passage?

d) What happens after this passage?


‘she said she tried but it was no good, Xuma. And she cried a great deal, son, for she loves you truly……… it is hard to explain, Xuma, for the things that are in the mind of another person are always hard to understand. But I know Eliza is a good girl and I know she loves only you. She has the same sickness that Daddy had, Xuma, and I loved Daddy, so I know…..’

‘Be quiet,’ Xuma said softly and sat staring in front of him without seeing any thing.

The room was suddenly quiet and strange. And the world was so too, an empty and strange place.

Ma plank kept looking at him. There was no anger in his eyes. There was nothing in them and they kept looking at one place without seeing that place. She did not know what she had expected him to do but she knew she had not expected him to sit there quietly, staring at one place without seeing it.

‘I am sorry,’ she said softly.

Xuma did not hear her. She got up and dished him a plate of food.

‘she asked me to cook for you,’ ma plank said, but Xuma did not hear her.

She gave him the food. He ate, mechanically, without knowing of caring. Ma plank had expected him to ask her more questions but there he was, eating and staring and seeing nothing and tasting nothing. People did not behave like that. When they were hurt they did things. They cried or they shouted or they did not eat or they drank or they were angry or their bodies were stiff. They were not just ordinary, as always.

Xuma became aware of the food and put it aside.

‘You have not finished,’ ma plank said.

‘Please go,’ Xuma said.

Ma plank was on the verge of protesting, but she looked at him and changed her mind. Slowly she gathered up her shawl and went out.


a) What happens to lead to this passage?

b) What is the character of ma plank as shown in the passage?

c) Which are signs of Eliza’s love for Xuma are revealed in the passage?

d) What happens after this passage?

Sub – section (ii)

Answer one question on one book only.

N.B if your answer in sub – section (i) was on a play, now select a novel; but if your answer in sub – section (i) was on a novel you must now select a play.

WOLE SOYINKA: Jero’s Metamorphosis

Either 5. Describe the character of Ananaias as shown in the play, Jero’s Metamorphosis

Or 6. Discuss the major themes dealt with in Jero’s metamorphosis.


Either 7. Discuss the theme of love in Romeo and Juliet.

Or 8. What is the importance of the nurse in the Romeo and Juliet?


EITHER 9. What is Juana’s contribution to what happens in, the pearl?

Or 10. “The pearl is evil.” In which ways is the pearl evil?


Either 11. What reasons would you give to prove that Maisy is the ‘right’ woman for Xuma?

Or 12. In what ways does Leah help fellow Africans to cope with life in Malay camp?


In this section you must answer three questions covering three books.

THE BROTHERS CAPEK: the insect play

Either 13. a)why do the beetles attach so much importance to their pile?

b) What similarity is here between the beetles and people in the modern world?

Or 14. What human characteristics do the butterflies reveal in The Insect Play?

JOHN RUGANDA: black mamba

Either 15. Why does namuddu agree to berewa’s ‘money’ making plan?

Or 16. Explain what the black mamba means in the play black mamba.

TIMOTHY WANGUSA: upon This Mountain

Either 17. Giving evidence from the text, explain whether you regard Mwambu as a man or not.

Or 18. Explain the effect of the chapel scandal on the following:

a) Mwambu,

b) Nambozo,

c) Reverend James Graves.

ELECHI AMADI: the great ponds

Either 19. What is the contribution of the dibias to the lives of the people in the novel, the great ponds?

Or 20. “Pride comes a fall,” referring closely to the people of chiolu and Aliakoro, show the truth of the statement.

NGUGI WA THIONG’O: weep not child

Either 21. Why is Ngotho a bitter and frustrated man?

Or 22. Describe the inhuman behavior of the whites towards the Africans.


An introduction to East African poetry

Read the poem below and answer the questions following it.

Either 23. Naturally

I fear the workers: they writhe in bristling grass

And wormy mud: out with dawn, back with dusk;

Depart with seed, and return with fat bursting fruit

And I eat the fruit.

And still they toil: at boiling point,

In head splitting noise and threatening saws:

They suck their energy from slimy cassava

And age rusty water taps: till they make a Benz.

And I ride in the Benz: festooned with

Striped rags and python copper coiling monsters

While the workers clap their blistered hands,

And I overrun their kids.

They build their hives: often out

Of the broken bones of fallen mates:

And I drone in them ‘state house’

Them, ‘collegize’ them, officialize them.

And I…..I whore their daughters

Raised in litter rotting hovels

And desiring a quick quick high high life life

To break the bond.

And I tell the workers to unite:

Knowing well they can’t see hear or understand:

What with sweat and grime sealing their ears

And eyes already blasted with welding sparks,

And me speaking a colorless tongue.

But one day a rainstorm shall flood

The litter rotten hovels and

Wash the workers’ ears and eyes clean,

Refresh the tattered muscles for a long delayed blow.

Austin Bukenya


a) Who is speaking in the poem? Illustrate your answer.

b) What is meant by the following expressions:

(i) ………speaking a colorless tongue

(ii) ………sweat and grime sealing their ears

(iii) ……..they toil at boiling point?

c) Briefly state what the poem is about.

d) What are your feelings towards

(i) The workers,

(ii) The speaker?

Or 24. Select one poem from An introduction to east African poetry on “love and marriage” and use it to answer the following questions’

a) State the title of the poem and the name of the poet.

b) From the poem you have chosen, state what has been said about love or marriage.

c) I what ways does the poet’s idea of love or marriage agree or disagree with yours?

d) What has the poem enjoyable to you?

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