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Frontline Quiz

FLQ - The Frontline Quiz!

Print edition : Jun 24, 2022 T+T-

FLQ - The Frontline Quiz!

Mao Tse Tung, Chairman of the Central Committee of the People's Republic of China. Photo: The Hindu Archives | Photo Credit: HSINHUA NEWS AGENCY

1. The late Ladi Kwali was a potter and something of a Nigerian icon. She shares a unique honour with the likes of Chairman Mao, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Genghis Khan, Edvard Munch, Nikola Tesla, Ingmar Bergman, and Jane Austen, among many others. Only one Indian is eligible to be on this list. What is it a list of?

2. You can find famous examples of these all over the world: Colorado, Arizona, and Nevada in the US; the UK; Finland; Norway; and Mahabalipuram in India. In Zimbabwe, they are so loved, they found pride of place on a currency note. What structures are we talking about?

3. The Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Luke both quote Jesus through a phrase often rendered in English as “You cannot serve both God and Mammon.” In Dungeons & Dragons, a character named Mammon is portrayed as a devil. In his book The Enchantments of Mammon: How ________ Became the Religion of Modernity, the author Eugene McCarraher blends history, prophecy, and polemic. Fill in the blank.

4. TANSTAAFL is an expression that describes the cost of decision-making and consumption. The concept of TANSTAAFL is thought to have originated in 19th-century American saloons where customers could avail themselves of a special offer. From the basic structure of the offer, it is evident that there were strings attached. What does TANSTAAFL stand for?

5. During the Second World War, large numbers of British airmen were felled over enemy airspace and then held as prisoners behind enemy lines. Germany, in part as a nod to the Geneva Convention, allowed humanitarian groups such as the Red Cross to distribute care packages to those prisoners. One of the categories of items that could be included in those packages was “games and pastimes”. So the Allies took military advantage of this: Posing as a “charity” (the Licensed Victuallers Prisoners Relief Fund), they sent packages to their POWs that had clandestine escape kits that included tools like compasses, metal files, money, and, most importantly, maps. How did they send these items across?

6. This term was first used in 1987 by Dana Dane in the rap song “Nightmares”, which featured in his debut album “Dana Dane with Fame”, and referred to the sound effect of tinkling bells that was used in cartoon shows. It was popularised by Cash Money Millionaires in 1999. What is the term?

7. Discussing the concept in a speech in 1968 titled “To Hell With Good Intentions”, Ivan Illich spoke of the sense of responsibility that drives noblesse oblige: an idea first developed by the French aristocracy as a moral duty derived from its wealth. Illich scathingly called the concept “paternalism”, an extension of power and authority over cultures around the world. In the UK, trade unions have said that on a long-term basis, it is a form of exploitation used to avoid minimum wage legislation. What concept is being talked about?

| Photo Credit: SIVA SARAVANAN S

8. A 2016 report found that in Tamil Nadu, 351 of 743 spinning mills used something called the Sumangali Scheme through which recruiters targeted poor families, promising them a lump sum in exchange for their daughters working in the mills. The women were subjected to exploitative labour practices, including restriction of movement, confiscation of mobile phones, and withholding of wages. According to the Walk Free organisation, this kind of bonded labour falls under a larger umbrella category that includes trafficking and debt bondage. Name it.

9. Two Picasso questions: i) Legend has it that at the height of his fame, Pablo Picasso would pay for meals, and so on, with cheques rather than cash. Why? ii) When once asked to pay for a meal with a drawing, the artist reportedly said: “I’m buying a meal, not X.” What was X?

10. Where, outside a kitchen or fridge, might one find a lobster, a few prawns, and sometimes an odd pineapple sharing a tight space with one another?


1. Figures on banknotes

2. Balancing boulders

3. Capitalism

4. There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch

5. Monopoly

6. Bling bling

7. Volunteering as free or charity work

8. Modern Slavery

9. i. His signature was worth so much money, often the owners would never cash the cheque.

ii. The restaurant.

10. An Australian wallet: these are all widely used colloquialisms to refer to Australia’s colour-coded paper currency