Billy Budd 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. How old is Jon Claggart when he enters the Navy?

2. Which mutiny is referred to as "the Great Mutiny"?

3. Which mutiny is discussed in chapter five?

4. What type of personal life does Captain Vere lead?

5. Which character is known for this neat, careful dress?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the scourging affect Billy?

2. What advice does the Dansker give Billy about his confrontation with the afterguardsman?

3. Who is Starry Vere?

4. Describe Billy's background.

5. Who is Squeak?

6. What is a mutiny?

7. Describe John Claggart.

8. How do the sailors on board the Bellipotent view John Claggart?

9. How do ruling bodies on board a ship compare to ruling bodies on land?

10. How does the social climate on board a ship compare to the social climate on land?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What is a "cat's paw" and which characters represent this analogy? Why does Claggart choose to use a "cat's paw" instead of dealing with Billy himself? How does the use of the "cat's paw" backfire on Claggart?

Essay Topic 2

What role does the social community on board the Bellipotent play in the novel? How are the characters affected by the extended amount of time they spend living and working together in a relatively small area? How are conflicts resolved among crew members? How do unresolved conflicts affect the characters in the novel?

Essay Topic 3

What is Billy's Achilles' heel and how does it affect his character? Does Billy's Achilles' heel negate his standing as the "Handsome Sailor" of the Bellipotent? Why or why not? If Billy's is the "Handsome Sailor" of the Bellipotent, how does his Achilles' heel affect the other characters?

(see the answer keys)

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