Butcher's Crossing Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

John Williams
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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. Who rides beside Andrews throughout the hunting expedition?

2. Andrews asks the hotel clerk if the clerk knows a man by what surname?

3. What number room is Andrews given when he checks into the hotel in Butcher's Crossing?

4. Andrews presents a letter to McDonald when he finds him in Butcher's Crossing. By whom is the letter signed?

5. When Miller asks why Andrews had turned down a job with McDonald, what is Andrews's reply?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the theme of racism arise within the character of Miller?

2. What is the significance of the field of buffalo bones depicted in the narrative?

3. What reservations does Schneider share about the prospect of the buffalo hunting expedition?

4. What is the author's reason for including McDonald's comment to Andrews that "Young folks…don't know what to do with themselves" (22)?

5. When Andrews is unable to explain to McDonald his esoteric reasons for coming west, what does he tell McDonald instead?

6. What are Miller's reasons for choosing the destination he does for the buffalo hunting expedition?

7. What is the main hardship Andrews faces in the first days of the hunting expedition?

8. How is irony present within Miller's discussion of how every part of a buffalo can be used for some human purpose?

9. What is shown about Andrews's character in the passage when he tries to summon the images of the Colorado territory he has seen in books and magazines?

10. For what purpose does Andrews immediately seek McDonald when he reaches Butcher's Crossing?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the author's choice to tell the story of John Williams's novel Butcher's Crossing using the third person omniscient point-of-view. What elements of the novel's themes lend themselves to this choice and what is the author's intended effect on the reader?

Essay Topic 2

Look carefully at the passages of the novel that describe the friction between Schneider and Miller. What is the author's purpose for discussing at length the nature of the friction between these two men?

Essay Topic 3

Write a critical essay about John Williams's novel Butcher's Crossing while using the critical power theory lens of feminist theory. Use textual evidence to back up your strong, specific claim regarding the novel's treatment of gender roles, the objectification of women, female empowerment, misogyny's role within society, or any other issues related to feminist theory that can be found in the book.

(see the answer keys)

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