Childhood's End 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 the American scientist see from the Pacific island?

2. What does George Greggson desire to do with Jean Morrel?

3. Where do the aliens come from?

4. What does Karellen believe can achieve political harmony?

5. What truth is revealed about the alien spaceships?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why are newspapers virtually obsolete in 2050?

2. What does the arrival of the Overlords do to religion?

3. What does Alexander Wainwright believe the Overlords are waiting for before revealing themselves?

4. Why are professional sports almost obsolete in 2050?

5. What is so shocking about the Overlords' appearance as revealed in Chapter 5?

6. What is the relationship between Reinhold Hoffmann and the Russian scientist Konrad Schneider?

7. What does Jan Rodricks ask Professor Sullivan to help him do, and what is Sullivan's response?

8. Who is Karellen, and what does he state is his intention for occupying Earth?

9. Rikki Stormgren triggers an x-ray device on board the Overlords' ship. Why does Stormgren bring the device on board, and what does the x-ray reveal?

10. Why are the journalists and spectators waiting in anticipation at the beginning of Chapter 5?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Karellen reveals himself in Chapter 5. He invites two children to join him on board his ship before he exits. Consider whether or not children have an inherent fear of the same things adults find frightening, or if fear is a learned response. Discuss the differences between what is frightening to a child and what is frightening to an adult. Describe Karellen's rationale in revealing himself in the fashion he does, based on what he has discerned about human nature.

Essay Topic 2

Earth, as the characters in the novel know it, ends. In the story arc, identify when the end of mankind becomes inevitable. Discuss whether or not the novel could have ended any other way. Are George Greggson, Jean Morrel, and Jan Rodricks tragic figures, or are they heroes? Defend your answer. If Clarke had asked you to title his novel, would you have chosen "Childhood's End" or "Childhood's Beginning"? Explain your answer.

Essay Topic 3

The supernatural seems to intrude on the natural during the seance held at Rupert Boyce's home. While "Childhood's End" is a work of science fiction, identify two or three events that might seem better suited to a work of fantasy or supernatural fiction. Why did Clarke interject these events into what most would consider "hard" science fiction? Discuss whether Clarke using this fictional convention helps or hinders the overall theme of the book.

(see the answer keys)

This section contains 790 words
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