A Fire upon the Deep Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What would render the ghosts' plan worthless?

2. What does Grondr tell Ravna?

3. What does Johanna notice about her captors?

4. What does one poster on the net think think the Blight needs?

5. Who is badly wounded in the fighting?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Ravna learn when she visits Greenstalk and Blueshell in their quarters?

2. What does Steel do in the dungeons?

3. What lessens the size of Woodcarver's army even before any confrontation with Lord Steel's forces.

4. How does Pham occupy his time while the OOB draws closer to the planet where Jefri awaits?

5. Describe Blueshell and Greenstalk.

6. How does Greenstalk create havoc with Pham's trust of the two Riders?

7. In what condition is the ship in which the Olsndot family escapes Earth by the time it reaches an unnamed and habitable world?

8. What is the technology like that the humans in the lab are developing and what happens?

9. Where are the scientists from and what are they doing?

10. Describe Ravna Bergsndot.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The time this novel takes place at least 5 billion years after our present time. Discuss the following: 1. Do you think technology will have advanced as far or farther than that shown in A Fire Upon the Deep? 2. Vinge sets the novel so far into the future of at least 5 billion years that it seems cultures might be incomprehensible from the present, yet much of the world of that time is still familiar enough to understand. Do you think this fact works for you as a reader? Do you think Vinge might have done better to have set the novel not so far into the future? Why or why not? 3. History seems to be cyclic; major civilizations have arisen and fallen just over the course of human recorded history, much less history before anything is recorded. Given that fact, do you think it is likely that there have been many cycles of history and civilizations in the 5 billion years between now and when A Fire upon the Deep takes place? Do you think many of these civilizations would actually seem far more incomprehensible than the universe which exists at the time of A Fire upon the Deep? Why or why not? What might one of these almost incomprehensible civilizations be like?

Essay Topic 2

Whenever reading a science fiction or fantasy novel, one must become familiar with new terminology that explains concepts or technology that is not a part of the "real" world. In the case of A Fire upon the Deep, there is a great deal of new terminology and familiar words with new meanings. Discuss the following: 1. Find five terms that are a part of the world of A Fire upon the Deep that are a part of the language of 2010 but mean something different. Define the words as used in A Fire upon the Deep and compare those five words as to how they are currently used in the American English language. 2. How does the language of A Fire upon the Deep from that of 2010? Are there words you did not know from that time? What? How do you learn their meanings? What does it mean to grasp a the meaning of a word through its context? Can you do that in A Fire upon the Deep? Give an example of several words whose definition are made clear through the context of how the word is used. 3. There are ways of learning about a new world or time when reading a science fiction or fantasy novel. Discuss the ways you were able to understand the world of A Fire upon the Deep through its vocabulary. Did you have to look up any words? 4. Were there any words you never really understood from A Fire upon the Deep? Which ones?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss one of the following: 1. Trace and analyze the theme of manipulation and power in A Fire Upon the Deep. Consider the following questions as you write: What characters are most concerned with manipulation and power? Why? What are some symbols of manipulation and power? Symbols of powerlessness? What characters seem powerless? 2. Trace and analyze the theme of genocide in A Fire Upon the Deep. Which characters seem to accept that genocide is sometimes necessary? Why? Which characters seem opposed to genocide no matter what? Why? Which ones seem not to care one way or the other? 3. Trace and analyze the theme of death. Death happens on a scale that is almost incomprehensible with billions of sentient beings being wiped out of existence. Does this inure a reader to the impact of death? When death is brought to a more individual level, such as in the world where the Olnsdots land, does it have a greater impact? How do the Tines' civilization seem to view death? What is different about the death of some of the Tine's packs? Do you think the way the Tines live in packs makes death easier or more difficult to bear?

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