No Men Are Foreign By James Kirkup

No men are foreign

NCERT IX CBSE Solution| Summary| Quiz and Q&A| words meaning and central Idea

Variations in humans and other living things do, in fact, demonstrate the artistry of the creator who so brilliantly built this cosmos. Look at the human beings, plants animals, birds and cattle on this planet, they depict the flawless engineering of God which are so praiseworthy and wonderful.

Let’s talk about the commonness and diversity in this classroom. Look at Seeta, she has brown eyes and long curly hair, but her friend, Riya has dark black straight hair. In my eyes, both look beautiful. Let’s talk about Akram. He is good at painting and singing whereas his friend, Riky is a good football player and has wonderful calculations.

Let me screen the video without sound. You dear students are supposed to capture the video with a focus on diversity and commonness.

Now make two groups of five students. Group A will write all the common things on the right side of the board whereas group B will write the uncommon things on the left side of the board.

  • How many of you ever felt uncomfortable at any place, event or program due to your identity?
  • Have you watched any film based on discrimination and prejudices?
  • What does our constitution say about the right of each citizen of this country?
  • Has any of you ever been humiliated or discriminated due to caste, poverty or colour of skin?

Today, we will dive in deep to discuss all the important points of the poem ‘ No Men Are Foreign By James Kirkup. I ensure you will get a complete idea to write the summary and explanation properly. You will be able to write a better answer to the given question in your book. After reading this page you will find the secret to scoring outstanding marks in your examination.

Points to be discussed

  • Introduction to the poem
  • Theme and main Ideas
  • Keywords and Quick Point after each Stanza
  • Videos just like a live class
  • Quiz for assessing comprehension
  • Relevant Quotations and statements
  • Difficult words
  • Question Answer

Introduction to the poem: No Men are Foreign

Brotherhood is the very price and condition of man’s survival

By the title, the poet wants to say that all mankind living on the earth are not from another country. They are not strange. Because all of us share the same planet that is the earth. According to the poet, all men are the same, all men are equal. 

He wants to promote the concept of universal brotherhood. In this poem, the poet wants to tell us that everyone in this world is indifferent. He mentioned some points to make his statement stronger like– they eat, live, die in the same way. Everyone gets the bounties of nature like sunshine, land etc in equal measure. We can also say that this poem promotes the idea of pacifism and peace in the world.

शीर्षक के द्वारा कवि कहना चाहता है कि पृथ्वी पर रहने वाली समस्त मानव जाति किसी अन्य देश की नहीं है। वे अजीब नहीं हैं। क्योंकि हम सभी एक ही ग्रह को साझा करते हैं जो कि पृथ्वी है। कवि के अनुसार, सभी पुरुष समान हैं। वह सार्वभौमिक भाईचारे की अवधारणा को बढ़ावा देना चाहते हैं। इस कविता में कवि हमें बताना चाहता है कि इस दुनिया में हर कोई उदासीन है।

उन्होंने अपने बयान को मजबूत करने के लिए कुछ बिंदुओं का उल्लेख किया जैसे- वे खाते हैं, जीते हैं, उसी तरह मरते हैं। सभी को प्रकृति के वरदान जैसे धूप, भूमि आदि समान मात्रा में मिलते हैं। हम यह भी कह सकते हैं कि यह कविता दुनिया में शांति और शांति के विचार को बढ़ावा देती है।

Theme and main idea

Unity to be real must stand the severest strain without breaking

Mahatma Gandhi
  • To promote global brotherhood and humanity
  • To abrogate wars and discrimination
  • To understand the Justice of the Creator in all aspects
  • To propagate the message of love, kindness, and harmony
  • To find out the universality in the blessings of god

Stanza -wise Explanation along with Specification

Stanza 1

Remember, no men are strange, no countries foreign

Beneath all uniforms, a single body breathes

Like ours: the land our brothers walk upon

Is earth like this, in which we all shall lie

Beneath: under, Strange: unknown,

  • Read the stanza . Express two common things that make us a human being?
  • What are things that you can find under Uniform of soldiers/worriors’ uniforms?
  • We share one planet for living, Infer the meaning what the poet want to say to the audience?
  • What do ypu mean by we all shall lie ?


In the first line the poet claimes that no one is strange, and no country is foreign, (another country). So, he attempts to remove the boundary or the demarcation from the Earth which has been erected to separate countries across the globe. Then only no country will be foreign. It seems every country is our own land when there will be no borders, everyone will be free to travel and explore all over the world. He wants to say that the entire countries lie on one planet So it belongs to one human race. Then he says that inside the uniforms/Dress code worn by soldiers of different nations/states, the human being is the same. God has made all of us in a similar way. we breathe in the same way as people of other countries. Then he says that all the soldiers are our brothers – we all walk upon the same ‘Mother Earth’ and upon our death, shall lie in the grave in the same Earth.

Stanza 2

They, too, aware of sun and air and water,
Are fed by peaceful harvests, by war’s long winter starv’d.
Their hands are ours, and in their lines we read
A labour not different from our own

Starv’d: Hungary

  • Whom the word they refers in this stanza.
  • What are the natural elements poet mention in this stanza? and why?
  • How labours are similar in all coutries?
  • Express your opinion on peacefullness?
  • What kind of disasters occur during a war?


‘They’ refers to the people of the different countries. We generally call them foreigners and treat them in different ways and fight with them sometimes. Poet says that God has bestowed us with plenty of bounties and blessings in the form of a variety of edible things. HE also gives us the most essential things like water and air. Everyone gets sunlight, air and water in equal measure which suggests that God doesn’t discriminate people of different countries on any basis. We all do farming/agriculture activity in the absence of wars. We live a peaceful life and eat the items given by God naturally. Additionally, he says that the way we starve during wars and wintertime is that the same for those people from other countries. Even they don’t get food at that point. So, he wants to mention that foreigners who belong to a different country and that we, both are the same. Then the poet says that even their body and hands are the same as ours, they struggle to achieve their dream as we do. He is trying to give the message to us that there’s no difference in people belonging to different countries.

Stanza 3

Remember they have eyes like ours that wake
Or sleep, and strength that can be won
By love. In every land is a
common life
That all can recognise and understand.

  • ‘Eyes like ours that wake Or sleep‘ elaborate in your own words?
  • What words would you use to describe the power of love?

Each one of us can make a difference. Together we make change


The poet urges the reader to remember something. He tells that we should keep in mind that the people of another country, whom we think to be our foe/enemy, have been bestowed by God with a similar look like us. God has given them eyes like ours which open when awake and close when we are asleep. Further, he says God has given them strength which we can win through love and compassion. He additionally says that in every country, in every land there is one common thing, that is life. Life means all the things that are living. And if we can recognize them and if we can understand their feelings and realize that they are like us, then there will be no conflict or battle between us.

Stanza 4

Let us remember, whenever we are told
To hate our brothers, it is ourselves
That we shall dispossess, betray, condemn.
Remember, we who take arms against each other

  • What should we remeber if someone prompt you to hate your brother.
  • Who lift their arm against you?
  • What would be your first steps if you were poisoned by someone who hated you?

dispossess: dislodge; deprive (बेदख़ल)


The poet makes us aware that whenever someone suggests us to hate a person from another country, to think of them as our enemy, and whenever we think of someone to be our enemy, then we deprive ourselves, we cheat ourselves, and we condemn ourselves and we make weak ourselves. He advises that we should stay away from such negativity and dark sprite. We ought not to consider anyone to be our enemy. During a war, both parties must bear the devastation. And that is why the poet says that war is not in our favour at all. Further, he says that whenever we raise any arms against someone, we should remember one thing…….

Stanza 5

It is the human earth that we defile.
Our hells of fire and dust outrage the innocence
Of air that is everywhere our own,
Remember, no men are foreign, and no countries strange.

  • To whom poet blames to make our earth polluted and dirty?
  • What other factors contribute to our environment’s polluted and unsustainable state?

There is no war that will end all wars. Haruki Murakami

defile: to make dirty; pollute
outrage the innocence of: violate the purity of


We should keep in mind that whenever we raise weapons against any party/individual, we make the Earth dirty because arms kill people and their bodies which fall on the Earth create a blot on it. Whenever war happens, it leads to a lot of bloodsheds, fire and human loss. These corpses accumulate on the Earth and it makes it polluted/dirty. The fire of war which lit up, the smoke which comes out, the dust which fills the air – it is so dirty that it pollutes and erode the purity of the air. By the above highlights, the poet wants to give us a message that we ought not to indulge in war and fight. Finally, he ends the poem by writing the first line in reverse and saying that Remember, no men are foreign, and no countries strange.

  1. Rhyme Scheme – The entire poem is written in free verse. There is no rhyme scheme in the poem.

The literary devices used are as follows

  • Alliteration: The repetition of a consonant sound in two or more closely placed words is called alliteration. The instances of alliteration in the poem are –
  • Stanza 1 – Body, breathes ‘b’ sound is repeated
  • Stanza 2 – war’s, winter ‘w’ sound is repeated
  • Metaphor 
  • Stanza 1 – Uniform refers to the military of different countries
  • Stanza 2 – wars time is compared to the winter season
  • Repetition: It is used in the entire poem.
  • ‘Remember’ word is repeated 5 times in this poem.
  • ‘Remember, no men are strange, no countries foreign’ is repeated in stanza 1 and stanza 5

Quiz: Check yourself



sad girl

#1. The poem, No men are foriegn' is composed by -

#2. The poet wants us to remember that , No men Are Foriegn'-

#3. According to the poet , A single body beneath all -

#4. In the end, all of us shall lie in-

#5. All the people are aware of -

#6. By fighting with eachother , we are ....the earth

#7. What message does the poet want to convey in the poem, No men are foriegn?


Project work

  • Prepare a three-minute speech on the topic. “There is no war that will end all the war”?
  • ‘Technology is jeopardizing global peace’? Debate in the classroom.

Question and Answer: No Men are Foreign

1. (i) “Beneath all uniforms. ..” What uniforms do you think the poet is speaking about?
(ii) How does the poet suggest that all people on earth are the same?

Answer. (i) The uniforms refer to those worn by soldiers belonging to different countries who indulge in wars and fights.
(ii) The poet says that all the people are the same in the following ways –

  1. we belong to one human race
  2. we walk on the same Earth
  3. Upon death, we will lie in our graves in the same Earth
  4. During peace we all enjoy the bounties of nature
  5. During war and in the winter season, we all starve due to shortage of food
  6. We all do a lot of labour with our hands
  7. We have eyes which function in the same way

2. In stanza 1, find five ways in which we all are alike. Pick out the words.

Answer: The five words which indicate that we are all alike are –

  1. we walk
  2. we breathe
  3. we have eyes
  4. we work with our hands
  5. we enjoy the bounties of nature

3. How many common features can you find in stanza 2? Pick out the words.

Answer. There are three common features in stanza two. They are as follows –

  1. We enjoy the bounties of nature and eat good food during peace
  2. We starve during war and in winter season.
  3. We have similar hands which we use for doing labour

4. “…whenever we are told to hate our brothers …” When do you think this happens? Why? Who ‘tells’ us? Should we do as we are told at such times? What does the poet say?


The leaders of any country tell the masses to hate the people of another country. They say so to fulfil their personal gains and benefits. The poet says that we should not follow them because when we hate our brothers, we hate and belittle ourselves. When we indulge in wars, we pollute and render the mother Earth impure by laying dead bodies on it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *