What are the narrator’s job and the purpose of his journey? What physical condition persuades him to rest for a few hours?
The answer is divided into three parts which are as follows: Narrator’s job: The narrator’s job is to perform the duty of the chief of the material department depot. His job responsibility includes the supervision of all the ongoing construction work for the future Paoki-Chengtu Railway.
Purpose of Journey: The purpose of his journey is to supervise the ongoing construction work at the site of the future Paoki-Chengtu Railway. He had to reach the material department at 10 a.m. to perform his duties and responsibilities. Physical Condition:
The intense cold, continuous snowfall, and chilly winds are the main reasons for compelling the narrator to stop for a while and take some rest for a few hours in a shady place under a cliff. Due to hunger and cold, it is quite difficult for him to carry on his journey towards his destination. He is faltering, that’s why he trips and falls badly that hurts him too. Darkness engulfs all the area around him, making him liable to fall into some deep gorge. So he makes the final decision of staying somewhere to regain his lost strength.
How old is Cheng-yu? How does he respond when the narrator asks, “Why isn’t anybody home?”
When the narrator reaches the doorway of a cave, he sees a child sitting on a stool with his hands on his knees, this posture of his reflects his deep thinking about something. The narrator assumes that the boy whose name he comes to know later Cheng-Yu is seven or eight years old. The child seems to have a quick wit. As it is reflected at the point when the narrator asks the child “Why isn’t anybody home?” The child replies in cross-question form, “Aren’t I anybody, Uncle?” He minds the remark of the narrator that suggests as if he were nobody.
What work do Cheng-yu’s parents do? What “job” has Cheng-yu been assigned, and what explanation does he give for refusing the narrator’s advice to go to sleep?
Cheng-Yu’s Parent Job: Cheng-Yu’s parents are very dedicated individuals and are quite honest about their work that’s why they are performing their jobs in heavy snowfall. His father is a labourer who opens up the mountains and drills holes for dynamite charges. Cheng-Yu’s mother serves as a traffic controller who has to stand on the narrow and dangerous road that has been blasted through the rock.
Cheng-Yu’s Job: Being a responsible child, Cheng-Yu’s parents in their absence have given him the job to stay vigilantly at home i.e. the cave, and take care of his baby sister Pao-Cheng.
Narrator’s advice and Cheng-Yu’s explanation: As Cheng-Yu has been performing his job for a long time, he becomes tired and sleepy too. When the narrator sees him drowsy on a small stool in the doorway of the cave, he advises him to go to bed and must have a little sleep. After listening to this, he at once negatively shakes his head and gives a thought-provoking reply that his papa and mama say that “one should never leave his post”.
What does the narrator do in the final paragraph? What does he realize is waiting for him?
The last paragraph should get credit for justifying the essence of the title. In this paragraph, the narrator is moved by the determination of little Cheng-Yu towards his responsibility, when he says that “A man should never leave his post.” After hearing this, the narrator’s lost spirits reawaken. He then dressed up again properly to continue his tiresome journey by buttoning up his coat, wearing the hat steadfastly on his head and then he leaves the cave with firm determination and commitment. At this point, he realizes that his job as a chief in the material department is waiting for him.
What sort of child is Cheng-yu? What attitude does he display towards his parents and his responsibilities?
Cheng-Yu’s Personality: Cheng-Yu is the main character of the story. The beginning of the story reflects the narrator’s life and his struggle for reaching his destination but as the story moves further, Cheng-Yu appears to be the sole building block for attracting the readers towards the story. Although Cheng-Yu is just a young boy of seven or eight years his personality is a true reflection of determination, sensibility, audacity, and resolution.
Attitude towards his parents and responsibilities: Cheng-Yu possesses a strong sense of responsibility towards his parents’ advice. His attitude towards his parents represents him as an incredibly submissive son as he gives preference to his duty of taking care of his baby sister till his mother’s arrival over his rest and sleep. He fully observes and practices on with the advice of his parents that “A man should never leave his post”.
What change in mood or outlook does the narrator experience in the course of the story? What causes the change?
The story changes the mood of the narrator from pessimistic to optimistic just because of the entry and intellect of the boy named Cheng-Yu and his parents’ loyalty towards their job. Meeting the boy, observing his responsibilities for his baby sister, and noticing the family’s mutual encouragement for one another has caused the change. His parents’ devotion moves the narrator significantly when he comes to know that the boy’s mother is standing steadfastly on the road controlling the traffic whereas his father is placing dynamite charges on a steep slope despite the heavy snowfall.
When the narrator advises the child to sleep, the child refuses him by saying that his papa and mama say that “A man should never leave his post”. This sentence of the boy changes the outlook and mood of the narrator. The narrator is really moved by the determination of little Cheng- Yu. The main cause of the change in the narrator’s mood is by seeing the boy’s attitude towards work and responsibility.
The boy, for example, takes care of his baby sister as his parents have asked him to do. He even asks the narrator to be quiet when he stamps his boots for fear of waking the baby. He himself learns a great lesson that “A man should never leave his post”. He goes back in order to get the job in the material department as a chief. He is prompted to set off for his destination and perform his duty there.
What ideas about work does the story convey? What else does the story suggest is valuable?
The story can be treated as a full-fledged, compiled thesis on the importance of the job and its responsibilities for an individual’s survival. It focuses on the titbits regarding how to perform job dutifully and sincerely whatever the circumstance be. Following are some of the ideas related to work that the story throws light on:
1) The first and the foremost idea is to show the utmost responsibility towards your job. One has to be committed and should not consider the work as a burden, rather than he should feel pleasure and pride in doing it as it is only the work that gives value and true identity to an individual in the society.
2) Next comes the question of such hurdles that on and off poke their head in a person’s way to divert his attention and crush his loyalty towards his job. One should have the courage to defeat them with determination. As in the story, the severe weather conditions seem to be trivial in preventing the writer’s way to carry on his journey to reach his destination as soon as possible and resume his job responsibilities.
3) The third idea that is of extreme worth is the wit, intellect, and responsible attitude which is sometimes shown by the younger ones more aptly as compared to the older fellows. Such behaviours or remarks by the young influence and sometimes change the way of thinking of the people too. Cheng-Yu changes the mind of the narrator just simply saying the sentence “A man should never leave his post.”
Do you think the story is overly moralistic? How does Tu make his story entertaining despite its rather heavy-handed message?
In my point of view, yes the story is overly-moralistic. The narrator skillfully presents the heavy-handed message regarding one’s duties and responsibilities towards his /her profession or job by saying “A man should never leave his post.” The powerful descriptive abilities of the narrator give it an amazing touch of sight and sound. The way in which the writer narrates the surroundings, weather, workers hustle-bustle, machinery operation and the insight of cave and lively gossiping with Cheng-Yu makes the story quite interesting, informative, and enjoyable too.
Do you think the motto, ‘a man should never leave his post,’ has any significance in different spheres of life? Discuss.
The motto “A man should never leave his post” definitely owns notable significance in almost every field of life whether the job is surrounded by four walls of the house or the outer world invites the person to perform his duties and responsibilities. A person who is not determined and sincere enough to value his post, it is quite a difficult task for him to achieve his desired objectives and success in life. One can easily understand the motto’s significance by keeping in view the incident that happened at the battle of Uhud wh
The students will be assigned the task of writing the character of Cheng-Yu.
Answer: Cheng-Yu is the main character of the story. The beginning of the story reflects the narrator’s life and his struggle for reaching his destination but as the story moves further, Cheng-Yu appears to be the sole building block for attracting the readers towards the story. Although Cheng-Yu is just a young boy of seven or eight years his personality is a true reflection of determination, sensibility, audacity, and resolution.
Cheng-Yu possesses a strong sense of responsibility towards his parents’ advice. Though he is quite young he has a mature mind that understands his responsibility well. His attitude towards his parents represents him as an incredible submissive son as he gives preference to his duty of taking care of his baby sister till his mother’s arrival over his rest and sleep. He fully observes and practices on with the advice of his parents that “A man should never leave his post”.
Write an essay on “A man should never leave his post.”
A Man Should Never Leave His Post Allah Almighty has given a superior place to man among all His creatures. Man is blessed with a strong sense of responsibility and the ability to think and respond appropriately.
Every one of us owns a special place not only in our family but concerning our society too. Keeping in view the special place one has, there come some responsibilities as well. To fulfil all the duties and responsibilities to the best, man has to work hard and with honesty. If one is not sincere to his responsibilities then there are the chances of his failure or he may become a source for corrupting his surroundings with his wrong-doings. It is well said that a man should never leave his post’ because if a person is made responsible for doing a certain act and he will not perform it appropriately then this causes chaos in the society.
To understand it more clearly, let’s take a simple home example. If parents have to go somewhere and they decide to leave their three children (age ranging from 2 to 6) at home with their grandfather. After some time, the grandfather has a friend who asks him to accompany him for a walk. In his absence, one of the children falls from the stairs and gets badly hurt. When the parents return and see their child badly hurt then they must hold the grandfather responsible for his negligence.
One can find a wonderful example of this saying for the Battle of Uhud when the followers of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) left their place to gather the leftover weapons of the enemies. Then they had to suffer a great loss just because they had left their post.
In a nutshell, it is quite obvious that a man should not leave his post and must perform his duties and responsibilities with honesty and sincerity for the betterment of society and community. Furthermore, he must not forget the fact that he has to leave this world and be answerable for all his deeds in front of Allah Almighty on the Day of Judgment.