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. Why is Karellen sad for his race?

2. Charles Yan Sen compares the aliens' cultivation of Earth to:

3. Why is Professor Sullivan sad in Chapter 13?

4. How does Karellen explain mankind's understanding of the invaders' devil-like appearance to Jan Rodricks?

5. What is the name of the inactive volcano on the island?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why do the Overlords watch George Greggson's children?

2. How does Karellen explain to Jan Rodricks mankind's ancient fear of the satanic appearance of the Overlords?

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

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

5. According to Karellen, why did the Overlords build Utopia, and what is his desire for mankind?

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

7. 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?

8. Describe Jan Rodricks' activities during his stay on Carina. How does he feel about his visit?

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

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 2

Karellen and the Overlords have a definite plan when it comes to the establishment of a Utopian state. In light of the entire novel, discuss why the Overlords have a compulsion to reform Earth's society. Consider the conditions ushered in by the Overlords - transforming Earth into Utopia. Explain why most humans are willing to embrace this new state. Compare and contrast the Overlords' tactful use of power vs. the use of brute force. Describe which method you feel was most appropriate for humanity in the book, assuming that the Overlords could have chosen to use force.

Essay Topic 3

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.

(see the answer keys)

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