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Date: February 6, 2009
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THE ARTICLE

Indian couple escape jail for kissing

A married Indian couple have escaped punishment for kissing in public. The 28-year-old man and his 23-year-old wife were arrested by Delhi police in September 2008. The police charged them with obscenity in a public place. Public displays of affection are largely taboo in India. The police officers said the couple were “sitting in an off-putting position near a railway station and kissing, which caused passersby to feel bad". However, in court, the judge decided the young couple’s kiss did not break the law and that they did nothing wrong. Judge Muralidhar said "an expression of love by a young married couple" was not illegal. In addition, he said he wondered how anyone could find a simple kiss to be obscene.


 
 

It is extremely rare to see couples kissing in public in India. It is acceptable and common for young couples to hold hands in public places. Anything more romantic than this simple act could mean three months in prison. This is the maximum punishment for committing an “obscene act” in India. Many Indians, especially older, more conservative ones, think kissing in public is immoral. The Hollywood superstar Richard Gere sparked a storm of protest in 2007 when he kissed Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty in public. Gere and Shetty were at an AIDS awareness event in Delhi. Gere playfully kissed Shetty on the hand and face. India’s media received thousands of calls and letters asking for the arrest of Gere for insulting Indian culture.


 


 

WARM-UPS

1. KISSING: Walk around the class and talk to other students about kissing. Change partners often. After you finish, sit with your partner(s) and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

married couple / arrested / obscenity / taboo / breaking the law / expression of love / rare / holding hands / public places / punishment / storm of protest / insulting

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. BAD BEHAVIOUR: What do you think of people doing these things in public places? Complete the table below. Change partners and share what you wrote.

In a public place?

How bad?

Punishment?

What you would say

Kissing

 

 

 

Spitting

 

 

 

Urinating

 

 

 

Swearing

 

 

 

Smoking

 

 

 

Wearing swimwear

 

 

 

4. NO KISSING: Students A strongly believe people should not kiss in public; Students B strongly believe people can kiss wherever they like. Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. KISSING PLACES: Where is it OK to kiss and where is it not OK to kiss? Score these places from 10 (= you must absolutely NEVER kiss here) to 1 (kissing here is no problem whatsoever). Discuss your scores with your partner(s). Change partners and talk about your conversations.

_____  A busy street

_____  A movie theatre

_____  A school classroom

_____  A place of worship

_____  In front of the milk in a supermarket

_____  On a crowded train

_____  In a restaurant

_____  In a hospital

6. TABOO: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘taboo’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

A prison official set a couple free after they kissed in public.

T / F

b.

Publicly displaying affection in India is a cultural no-no.

T / F

c.

Police officers said people felt bad because of a couple kissing in public.

T / F

d.

A court judge in India said kissing in public was not against the law.

T / F

e.

It is perfectly acceptable in India for couples to hold hands.

T / F

f.

People can go to prison for three months in India for kissing in public.

T / F

g.

Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty kissed actor Richard Gere on the face.

T / F

h.

Many Indians wanted Richard Gere arrested for kissing in public.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article:

1.

escaped

a.

doing

2

obscenity

b.

demonstration

3.

affection

c.

abusing

4.

taboo

d.

avoided

5.

expression

e.

top

6.

extremely

f.

love

7.

maximum

g.

started

8.

committing

h.

immorality

9.

sparked

i.

very

10.

insulting

j.

unmentionable

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one. combination is possible):

1.

A married Indian couple have escaped

a.

of protest

2

The police charged them

b.

taboo in India

3.

Public displays of affection are largely

c.

hold hands

4.

the young couple’s kiss did not break

d.

on the hand

5.

an expression

e.

the law

6.

common for young couples to

f.

punishment

7.

three months in

g.

culture

8.

Richard Gere sparked a storm

h.

of love

9.

Gere playfully kissed Shetty

i.

with obscenity

10.

insulting Indian

j.

prison

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

A married Indian couple have __________ punishment for kissing in public. The 28-year-old man and his 23-year-old wife were __________ by Delhi police in September 2008. The police charged them with obscenity in a public place. Public displays of affection are largely __________ in India. The police officers said the couple were “sitting in an off-putting position near a railway station and kissing, which caused __________ to feel bad". However, in court, the judge decided the young couple’s kiss did not __________ the law and that they did __________ wrong. Judge Muralidhar said "an expression of love by a young married couple" was not illegal. In addition, he said he __________ how anyone could find a simple __________ to be obscene.

 

 

 

wondered
passersby
arrested
nothing
escaped
kiss
break
taboo

It is extremely __________ to see couples kissing in public in India. It is acceptable and common for young couples to hold hands in public places. Anything more romantic than this simple __________ could mean three months in prison. This is the __________ punishment for committing an “obscene act” in India. Many Indians, especially __________, more conservative ones, think kissing in public is immoral. The Hollywood superstar Richard Gere sparked a __________ of protest in 2007 when he kissed Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty in public. Gere and Shetty were at an AIDS awareness __________ in Delhi. Gere playfully kissed Shetty on the hand and face. India’s __________ received thousands of calls and letters asking for the arrest of Gere for __________ Indian culture.

 

 

storm
insulting
act
older
rare
event
maximum
media

LISTENING:  Listen and fill in the spaces.

A married Indian _________________ punishment for kissing in public. The 28-year-old man and his 23-year-old wife were arrested by Delhi police in September 2008. The police _________________ obscenity in a public place. Public displays of affection are largely taboo in India. The police officers said the couple were “sitting in an off-putting position near a railway station and kissing, ___________________ to feel bad". However, in court, the judge decided the young couple’s kiss did _________________ and that they did nothing wrong. Judge Muralidhar said "an _________________ by a young married couple" was not illegal. In addition, he said _________________ anyone could find a simple kiss to be obscene.

It is ____________________ couples kissing in public in India. It is acceptable and common for young couples to hold hands in public places. Anything more romantic ____________________ could mean three months in prison. This is the maximum punishment for committing an “obscene act” in India. Many Indians, ____________________ conservative ones, think kissing in public is immoral. The Hollywood superstar Richard Gere _________________ of protest in 2007 when he kissed Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty in public. Gere and Shetty were at an AIDS _________________ Delhi. Gere playfully kissed Shetty on the hand and face. India’s media received thousands of calls and letters asking for the arrest of Gere _________________ culture.


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionaries / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘public’ and ‘place’.

public

place

 

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

  • escaped
  • charged
  • largely
  • decided
  • expression
  • wondered
  • rare
  • hands
  • maximum
  • storm
  • event
  • culture

STUDENT KISSING SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about kissing in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

KISSING DISCUSSION

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘kissing’?

c)

What do you think about kissing in public being an offence in India?

d)

Do you think there should be rules and laws about kissing?

e)

Do you ever feel bad when you see people kissing in public?

f)

Are public displays of affection taboo in your country?

g)

What taboo topics are there in your country? Why are these taboo?

h)

Why do people kiss?

i)

How would life be different if kissing in public was banned?

j)

Do you think there could be something wrong with a simple kiss?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

What do you think Indian people think when they see Westerners kiss in public?

c)

What would it be like to live in a country where even holding hands was not allowed?

d)

How would you feel if you were sent to prison for three months in a foreign country for kissing in public?

e)

What public displays of affection should be banned?

f)

Do you think kissing in public is romantic?

g)

Who was the last person to spark a storm of protest in your country?

h)

Do foreigners ever insult your culture by mistake?

i)

Do you think Richard Gere should have been arrested?

j)

What questions would you like to ask the young Indian couple?

LANGUAGE

A married Indian couple have (1) ____ punishment for kissing in public. The 28-year-old man and his 23-year-old wife were arrested (2) ____ Delhi police in September 2008. The police charged them with obscenity in a public place. Public displays of affection are (3) ____ taboo in India. The police officers said the couple were “sitting in an off-putting position near a railway station and kissing, which caused (4) ____ to feel bad". However, in court, the judge decided the young couple’s kiss did not (5) ____ the law and that they did nothing wrong. Judge Muralidhar said "an expression of love by a young married couple" was not illegal. In addition, he said he wondered how anyone could find a (6) ____ kiss to be obscene.

It is extremely rare to see couples kissing in public in India. It is (7) ____ and common for young couples to hold hands in public places. Anything more romantic than (8) ____ simple act could mean three months in prison. This is the maximum punishment for committing an “obscene act” in India. Many Indians, especially older, (9) ____ conservative ones, think kissing in public is immoral. The Hollywood superstar Richard Gere sparked a storm (10) ____ protest in 2007 when he kissed Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty in public. Gere and Shetty were at an AIDS awareness event in Delhi. Gere (11) ____ kissed Shetty on the hand and face. India’s media received thousands of calls and letters asking for the arrest of Gere for (12) ____ Indian culture.

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

escape artist

(b)

escaping

(c)

escapee

(d)

escaped

2.

(a)

by

(b)

at

(c)

to

(d)

of

3.

(a)

larger

(b)

largely

(c)

largest

(d)

large

4.

(a)

pass us by

(b)

passing spies

(c)

passersby

(d)

passing by

5.

(a)

breaks

(b)

breaking

(c)

break

(d)

broken

6.

(a)

sample

(b)

simple

(c)

sampled

(d)

simpler

7.

(a)

accepts

(b)

accept

(c)

accepting

(d)

acceptable

8.

(a)

this

(b)

the

(c)

a

(d)

those

9.

(a)

most

(b)

more

(c)

many

(d)

much

10.

(a)

by

(b)

at

(c)

for

(d)

of

11.

(a)

played

(b)

playing

(c)

playfully

(d)

plays

12.

(a)

insulting

(b)

insult

(c)

insults

(d)

insulted

WRITING: 

Write about kissing for 10 minutes. Correct your partner’s paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about Richard Gere’s problems with kissing in public in 2007. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. WORLD KISSING: Make a poster about what different countries around the world think about kissing. What part does kissing play in different cultures? Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. KISSING: Write a magazine article about kissing. What different kinds of kisses are there?

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. THE KISS: Write an imaginary conversation between the Indian man arrested for kissing his wife in public, and the police officer who arrested him.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s). Role play your conversation in front of the class.

6. LETTER: Write a letter to India’s judges. Ask them three questions about kissing in public in India. Give them three suggestions on what they should do about public kissing in the future. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

F

b.

T

c.

T

d.

T

e.

T

f.

T

g.

F

h.

T

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

escaped

a.

avoided

2

obscenity

b.

immorality

3.

affection

c.

love

4.

taboo

d.

unmentionable

5.

expression

e.

demonstration

6.

extremely

f.

very

7.

maximum

g.

top

8.

committing

h.

doing

9.

sparked

i.

started

10.

insulting

j.

abusing

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

A married Indian couple have escaped

a.

punishment

2

The police charged them

b.

with obscenity

3.

Public displays of affection are largely

c.

taboo in India

4.

the young couple’s kiss did not break

d.

the law

5.

an expression

e.

of love

6.

common for young couples to

f.

hold hands

7.

three months in

g.

prison

8.

Richard Gere sparked a storm

h.

of protest

9.

Gere playfully kissed Shetty

i.

on the hand

10.

insulting Indian

j.

culture

GAP FILL:

Indian couple escape jail for kissing

A married Indian couple have escaped punishment for kissing in public. The 28-year-old man and his 23-year-old wife were arrested by Delhi police in September 2008. The police charged them with obscenity in a public place. Public displays of affection are largely taboo in India. The police officers said the couple were “sitting in an off-putting position near a railway station and kissing, which caused passersby to feel bad". However, in court, the judge decided the young couple’s kiss did not break the law and that they did nothing wrong. Judge Muralidhar said "an expression of love by a young married couple" was not illegal. In addition, he said he wondered how anyone could find a simple kiss to be obscene.

It is extremely rare to see couples kissing in public in India. It is acceptable and common for young couples to hold hands in public places. Anything more romantic than this simple act could mean three months in prison. This is the maximum punishment for committing an “obscene act” in India. Many Indians, especially older, more conservative ones, think kissing in public is immoral. The Hollywood superstar Richard Gere sparked a storm of protest in 2007 when he kissed Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty in public. Gere and Shetty were at an AIDS awareness event in Delhi. Gere playfully kissed Shetty on the hand and face. India’s media received thousands of calls and letters asking for the arrest of Gere for insulting Indian culture.

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - d

2 - a

3 - b

4 - c

5 - c

6 - b

7 - d

8 - a

9 - b

10 - d

11 - c

12 - a

 

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