English Language Past Paper

Topics: University of Cambridge Pages: 13 (3054 words) Published: January 27, 2013






General Certificate of Education
Advanced Subsidiary Level and Advanced Level


Paper 1 Passages for Comment

October/November 2011
2 hours

Additional Materials:

Answer Booklet/Paper


If you have been given an Answer Booklet, follow the instructions on the front cover of the Booklet. Write your Centre number, candidate number and name on all the work you hand in. Write in dark blue or black pen.

Do not use staples, paper clips, highlighters, glue or correction fluid. Answer two questions.
You are reminded of the need for good English and clear presentation in your answers. At the end of the examination, fasten all your work securely together. The number of marks is given in brackets [ ] at the end of each question or part question.

This document consists of 7 printed pages and 1 blank page.
DC (CB (NB)) 29212/3
© UCLES 2011

[Turn over

Answer two questions.


The following magazine article describes the experiences of a special search led by Marcelo dos Santos in the Amazon forest.
(a) Comment on the style and language of the passage.


(b) Later the writer publishes another article which describes another unusual meeting in another remote part of the world. Write the opening of the article (between 120–150 words). Base your answer closely on the style and language of the original extract. [10]

The rumor was a wild one, and it seized Marcelo dos Santos with the power of a primary myth.
There’s an Indian living in the woods around here, some local ranch hands were saying in 1996. He wears no clothes. Get near him, and he vanishes. He is utterly alone …
The rumor’s trail led to a logging operation near a cattle ranch. Marcelo and Altair, careful to sneak past the boss, found the company cook. “Yeah, I’ve seen him,” the cook told them, “and I know where he lives. Do you want to see?”

Before they followed the cook to the sharply drawn border between pasture and forest, they had their doubts about the story. Couldn’t the Indian have been a wandering member of the Akuntsu tribe, who also customarily wore no clothes? Wasn’t the idea of an essentially self-sufficient man living in unbroken communion with nature practically impossible now, more than five hundred years after conquistadors,* prospectors, slavers, missionaries, rubber tappers and scientists started penetrating the Amazon’s depths?

But when they stepped into the forest with the cook, they walked straight into an epic quest that would obsess, delight and terrify them for more than a decade. It would send them dodging arrows and would incite pitched battles with landowners that would upend lives forever. They would become detectives, piecing together the clues of a murder case that would ultimately offer them a glimpse of fathomless solitude. On the constricting edge of one of the last truly wild places on Earth, one man’s unlikely existence would show them what true survival meant and would underscore the value of mystery in a world with little room left for the unknown. Altair, clutching his rifle with one hand, twisted through a tangle of ferns. It was the peak of the dry season in 1998. They called this a rain forest, but it hadn’t even sprinkled here in sixty days. Insects swirled within the streaming bars of light that penetrated the canopy of jatoba trees. A papery rustle accompanied each footstep as he hiked deeper into the forest.

Purá stiffened and motioned to the others – he’d heard something behind him. “Quiet!” Marcelo whispered to the others.
They stood still and listened. Amid the ever-present chorus of bird song, they heard a rustling. The Indian was near the trap that they’d just discovered. They walked toward him, but he disappeared – it was as if he’d found a crack in the deep green curtain of foliage behind him and...
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