A Language Older Than Words Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Derrick Jensen
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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 does the Maori word "whenua" mean?

2. To what does Jensen compare the urge to destroy?

3. Why does Jensen not blow up the dams?

4. What is there room for in the world of economics?

5. Whom did the judge in the animal abuse case attack?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the coyote tree?

2. What dilemma does Jensen say that students face in school?

3. What does Jensen list as some of the things that human being need?

4. What was Jensen's childhood like?

5. In what way is high jumping therapeutic for Jensen?

6. What happens when Jensen tries to wall off the pain from his foot while jumping?

7. What is the original meaning of the word "economics?"

8. How does Jensen interpret his dreams of fishing?

9. Describe one of the ways in which Jensen says that humans justify their actions even if these actions are cruel or make no sense.

10. Why does Jensen take the two chicks to the coyote tree?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the interaction between the Maori Witi and Jensen. What does Witi hope to learn from Jensen? What is he trying to find out?

Essay Topic 2

In several places in the novel, Jensen questions the idea of individual ownership. For instance, when Jensen cleans his barn he wonders if he owns the mice and can do with them as he wishes just because he owns the barn. What is your opinion of this idea of personal ownership? What can be owned and what cannot?

Essay Topic 3

How do the cultural eyeglasses determine the way the people perceive the things that happen around them? What makes up or creates these cultural eyeglasses?

(see the answer keys)

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