Anthills of the Savannah 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 Sam originally want to become, before he is steered into a military career?

2. At the end of Chapter 8, what does Chris say he won't do?

3. What is Mad Medico's job?

4. What does the President claim to be?

5. In their conversation near the end of Chapter 8, what does Beatrice urge Chris to do?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Ikem's attitude toward women, according to Chris?

2. What is meant by the "Desdemona complex," and how does it apply to the President's behavior at the party?

3. Why do the Abazon leaders fail to support the President's bid to become dictator-for-life, and what does the President do in response to their lack of support?

4. What is happening outside the Presidential Palace in Chapter 1?

5. Describe the confrontation between Ikem and the taxi driver in Chapter 3. What does it reveal about Ikem's character?

6. What does Ikem mean when he says it is a writer's job to give headaches and not prescriptions? Do you agree with this statement?

7. Why is Mad Medico deported?

8. Why, according to Chris, is it so difficult to resolve the conflicts between Ikem and himself?

9. Describe Mad Medico's relationship to the President and his attitude toward him.

10. How is Beatrice portrayed in the media? How does she think of herself?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the idea of storytelling as a powerful tool.

1) Why, according to the Abazon elder, is the story of the battle more important than the battle itself?

2) Why, according to Ikem, are storytellers the enemies of tyrants?

3) How do Ikem's stories threaten the President? What change is he able to effect through them?

Essay Topic 2

Anthills of the Savannah has something in common with a traditional tragedy, in which pride brings about the downfall of a tragic hero. Write an essay examining Ikem, Sam, and Chris as tragic heroes who bring about their own downfall.

1) What does each man do that shows he is prideful or obstinate?

2) At what point could any of the three men have acted differently or made better choices to avoid their ultimate downfall?

3) Reflect on the inscription "Ife onye metalu" or ("What a man commits...") which is painted on the bus Chris escapes on. What significance does Chris see in this quote?

4) Consider Chris's choice of nominating Okong, a man he knew to be unscrupulous, as a minister in Sam's government. To what extent does this implicate Chris in the injustice of Sam's rule?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the theme of hope for Africa's future expressed in the novel Anthills of the Savannah.

1) What is the significance of the name of Elewa's baby?

2) How is it significant that the baby was named by a group of people from different backgrounds, classes, and faiths--military, worker, academic, market-girl, Muslim, Christian, etc.?

(see the answer keys)

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