Childhood's End 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. Who is Thanthalteresco?

2. What is the name of George Greggson's oldest son's dog?

3. What does Thanthalteresco call George Greggson's oldest son?

4. What happens to the island of Athens?

5. Who is Charles Yan Sen?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Karellen tell Professor Sullivan about the whale display upon seeing it for the first time, and what is the significance of what he says ?

2. What events are foreshadowed when the Inspector shares his report with Karellen after meeting with the New Athens council?

3. What happens at the council meeting between the leaders of New Athens and the Overlord "Inspector," Thanthalteresco? How does Thanthalteresco respond to Dr. Sen's comments?

4. In his radio address in Chapter 20, what does Karellen explain is his reason for occupying the planet?

5. What is ironic about Jan Rodricks' return to Earth?

6. Why are people worldwide grieving after George Greggson and Jean Morrel's children begin to change?

7. Why do George Greggson and Jean Morrel move to New Athens? Describe their adjustment to their new home.

8. What does Karellen reveal during his weekly press conference in Chapter 14, and how does he justify the Overlords' actions based on their revelation during the conference?

9. What does Jan Rodricks observe after the Overlords depart and leave him as the last person on Earth, and what does he wonder about the Overlords and his role at the end?

10. What is symbolic about the whale and the squid, especially in light of the end of the novel?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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 2

Several times throughout the book, Clarke calls upon mythological imagery. Describe and discuss the role that mythology plays in the book. Why did Clarke use mythology in the fashion that he did? Is it used effectively? Does it detract from the overall impression of the story? Explain your answers in depth.

Essay Topic 3

New Athens is introduced as another backdrop for events in the novel, and Ben Salomon is identified as the colony's founder. Contrast the differences in New Athens and the rest of the Utopian society. Discuss Salomon's rationale in founding New Athens. Note and emphasize his desire for it to be an artists' colony and his reasoning behind that decision. Another biblical reference is noted with Salomon and his comparison to Moses. Discuss the spiritual (but not necessarily religious) implications in Salomon's work.

(see the answer keys)

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