The Ancient Child 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 does Lola Bourne say she expects when she looks at the painting of the Night Window Man?

2. How old is Set?

3. What does Set feel as he accepts the medicine bundle?

4. Why did the singing and dancing among the Kiowa end?

5. How old was Set when his mother died?

Short Essay Questions

1. As Grey changes from a girl to a woman, how does Set's attitude toward her change?

2. Why was it better for the Piegan people to believe that the boy was a bear than that he was a boy?

3. What is the setting where Set begins his vision quest?

4. What does Lola Bourne see in the painting "Night Window Man" that Set himself does not see?

5. Why does Set enter his old house with dread?

6. Why did Kope'mah experience loneliness as a medicine woman?

7. Why were the Piegan people unable to believe in the child?

8. Who first let Grey know that the bear was coming into her life?

9. What do the lines on the red earth represent?

10. How does Set respond to the hospital staff's diagnosis and explanations of his condition?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Discuss Momaday's use of time. For example, many Native American customs cause the reader to think of the past, but that thought will be jarred by the mention of a modern actor, car, or TV program. What point do you think the author is trying to make by using time in such fluid ways?

Essay Topic 2

Momaday is a poet as well as a novelist, and many of the passages in this story are poetic. What makes poetry? Select three or four passages that you believe show characteristics of poetry and tell why you think so in each case.

Essay Topic 3

Death is a theme in this story. Describe the various ways in which death comes to characters in the story, noting especially the conversation about dying properly between Set-Angya and Billy the Kid. What is a "proper" death? Which characters die properly? Which do not?

(see the answer keys)

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