A Fire upon the Deep Test | Final Test - Hard

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

Short Answer Questions

1. Who prepares to eradicate all humans?

2. What does the noise of the cannon do to Woodcarver?

3. Who moves in with Johanna?

4. What are Riders through their skrodes?

5. What could take 120 days?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Often titles reveal much about one or more aspects of a novel. Discuss the following:

1. What do you think is the purpose of a title? How closely related to a major theme(s) of a book do you think a title should be? Or should it be?

2. How is the phrase "A Fire upon the Deep" relevant to the action of the novel? What sort of emotional and psychological response does the title evoke? Why do you think Vinge chose this title? If you were perusing the library for a book to read and saw this title, would it pique your interest? Why or why not. Does it seem to be the best title for the book?

3. If you were the writer of A Fire upon the Deep and your editor says the title must be changed, what would you choose? Why?

Essay Topic 2

There are a number of interesting questions raised by this book. Questions that most likely Vinge wanted the readers to consider and think through carefully. Discuss the following:

1. Name one idea/concept you think may have been a part of the author's agenda. Analyze that idea throughout the book and discuss Vinge's probable agenda concerning that idea.

2. Do you think writers who have an agenda for writing should point it out in a preface?

3. How often do you think fiction is written with a clear agenda in mind by the author?

Essay Topic 3

In chapter 15, Steel tours his dungeons, where the "raw material" is driven crazy to serve as the basis "blank packs." The dungeon is described in horrifying detail and contrasted with Woodcarver's processes aimed at the same goal, but bounded by "traditional ethics." Discuss the following:

1. Though Steel's methods are more horrific than Woodcarver's, their end goal is the same. Is this goal ethical? Why or why not?

2. Do you think what Steel and Woodcarver are attempting to do is moving the evolution of the Tines forward? Why or why not?

3. What do you think Steel and Woodcarver want in creating blank packs? Are there other ways of obtaining the same end without dubious means?

(see the answer keys)

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