American Gods Test | Final 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. In Chapter 19, what do Mr. Nancy and Shadow do at the bar besides drink?

2. Who does Chad Mulligan tell Shadow is missing in Chapter 11?

3. What woman visits Shadow on the tree on the second day of the vigil?

4. What is Laura certain of as she sits next to the dead Shadow in Chapter 17?

5. Where does Shadow drive Mr. Nancy at the beginning of Chapter 19?

Short Essay Questions

1. What transformation does Laura Moon undergo in Chapter 17?

2. How does Czernobog take his prize from Shadow in Chapter 20?

3. Describe Shadow's interaction with Zorya Polunochnyaya in Chapter 16?

4. What is the nature of Wednesday's vigil?

5. How does the war begin in Chapter 12?

6. What divine message does Shadow recall in Chapter 19?

7. What does Shadow experience on the tree on the second day of the vigil?

8. What is Loki and Wednesday's plan for the battle?

9. How does Laura Moon kill Mr. World in Chapter 18?

10. What is backstage?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In the character of Shadow Moon, Neil Gaiman has created a protagonist that, perhaps for selfish reasons, represents absolute loyalty. He demonstrates this through his commitment to Wednesday's campaign. Write an essay about this commitment, in three parts:

Part 1) Early in the novel, Shadow goes to extreme lengths to bring Czernobog on board with Wednesday. What agreement does he make with the fearsome god? How does this seem completely foolhardy? How, in the end, is Shadow rewarded for his commitment to others?

Part 2) When Ibis and Jacquel deliver news that Wednesday had been killed, does Shadow hesitate in agreeing to sacrifice himself to resurrect the god? Write a paragraph about his choice, focusing on the entreaties made by others for him to reconsider? What does he have to gain from this decision, and what does he have to lose?

Part 3) Write a summation paragraph examining Shadow's state of mind when he meets Shadow. What does he have to live for? Does he ever consider ending his own life? In what respect would death be a relief to him, and do you believe this affects the decisions he makes regarding Wednesday's war campaign?

Essay Topic 2

Part of Neil Gaiman's agenda in writing AMERICAN GODS is to illustrate how the traditions of today's popular religions have their roots in the ancient pagan faiths. He does this by craftily presenting these similarities baldly but without author's commentary. Write an essay about two of these examples:

Part 1) Early in the novel, Gaiman tells the story of Vikings who came to America. What traditional story of Odin do they bring with them? What iconography is so central that they reenact it in celebration of the god? To what Christian iconography is this similar? In what way does this create a comparison between Odin and Jesus Christ?

Part 2) Midway through AMERICAN GODS, Shadow and Wednesday go to San Francisco to speak with the goddess Easter. What connection does she draw between her divine traditions and the Christian celebration named for her? How are the two connected? What argument does Wednesday make to Easter regarding her presence in the Christian holiday?

Essay Topic 3

The mythos created by Neil Gaiman includes a backstage world, one that exists concurrent with our own. Write an essay about his world, examining its connection to humanity. How does it appear in relation our mortal existence? How do the old gods look in this backstage world? What about human beings? How are they affected by this backstage world? Is the backstage connected in any way with the afterlife?

(see the answer keys)

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