Commodore Perry in the Land of the Shogun Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Rhoda Blumberg
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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. In what year does the book open?

2. What could the samurai do to commoners for disrespect?

3. About what percent of the population were farmers in the mid-nineteenth century in Japan?

4. What type of structure did Japan have at this time?

5. What were the Japanese "war correspondents" doing the next morning?

Short Essay Questions

1. What happened on Friday, July 8th, 1853, at the opening of the book?

2. What was Edo's first response to the messengers and why is it amazing?

3. Describe the scene when the Susquehanna and Mississippi landed.

4. Who were the samurai?

5. Who were the lower classes in the cities and what was one advantage to their class?

6. Who held the real power in Japan?

7. What did the Japanese try to do and what did Commodore Perry order his men to do and why?

8. Who is Kayama; what did he want, and what was Commodore Perry's response to him?

9. Who did the Americans awaken to see the next morning and what would they be considered today?

10. Describe the scene as the ships steamed into the harbor.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Most protagonists are a mixture of admirable traits and character flaws, and Commodore Perry is no exception.

1. Trace and analyze situations when Commodore Perry demonstrates his admirable traits. Give specific examples to illustrate your analysis.

2. Trace and analyze Commodore Perry's character flaws, and explain how the flaws help or hinder his obtaining his objectives.

3. After analyzing Commodore Perry's strengths and weaknesses, decide if he is an appropriate "hero" of the story. Is there anyone else who might be a more admirable "hero"?

Essay Topic 2

Many technologically advanced cultures then as now often view those who were more agrarian or less technologically advanced as inferior. Discuss the following:

1. Discuss why you think technologically advanced cultures often believe they are superior to agrarian or less technologically advanced cultures. Include Japan and the United States from the perspective of what you have read in Commodore Perry in the Land of the Shogun.

2. Do you believe technologically advanced cultures are superior to agrarian or less technologically advanced cultures? Defend your view.

3. Research the topic of how technology has sometimes changed people's life for the worse and write an informative essay on the subject.

Essay Topic 3

Rhoda Blumberg has tried as much as possible to use historical events and facts around which to weave her work of fiction. Discuss the following:

1. Do you think The Hundred Days qualifies as an Commodore Perry in the Land of the Shogun? Why or why not?

2. If much of the events in the book are historical, what surprises you about the way the people, technology, ideas, etc... are portrayed?

3. Are the Americans more or less advanced than you pictured for the mid -1800s? Explain with examples. Are the Japanese more or less advanced than you pictured for the mid -1800s? Explain with examples.

(see the answer keys)

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