Billy Budd 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. What is attributed to will power in chapter 26?

2. Which two characters are Claggart's messmates?

3. Why does the captain ask Claggart to confront Billy?

4. What concerns the surgeon in chapter 20?

5. What does the Bellipotent chase in chapter 18?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Captain Vere explain Billy's execution to the crew?

2. Describe Billy's funeral.

3. What religious event compares to Billy's funeral?

4. Why doesn't Billy confront the afterguardsman or Claggart about any of the incidents that occurs?

5. How do the sailors of the Bellipotent honor Billy's memory?

6. How does Melville explain the trusting nature of most sailors?

7. Why does Captain Vere insist that the drumhead court render judgment according to the Mutiny Act?

8. How does Melville compare the politics that surround Billy's case with Jesus' trial?

9. How is Billy like a sacrificial lamb?

10. How does Billy react to Claggart's accusation?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the role violence plays in the novel. When does violence appear to be justified? When does violence appear to be immoral? How does violence, whether justified or immoral, affect the characters in the novel?

Essay Topic 2

What ironies are evident throughout the novel? What ironic elements are present in Billy's trial and execution? What ironic elements are presented in the manner in which Billy's story is reported on land versus at sea?

Essay Topic 3

Describe the qualities of the quintessential "Handsome Sailor". How does the "Handsome Sailor" affect the attitudes and actions of the crew of the Bellipotent? What risks are associated with being the "Handsome Sailor"?

(see the answer keys)

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