Confessions 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. Why does he prefer that sect at that time in his life?

2. When does Augustine believe a person starts sinning?

3. What does Augustine struggle to learn in school?

4. In what does Augustine try to be honest?

5. How is Augustine a paradox within himself?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who teaches Augustine about astrology and what does he say?

2. Where does Augustine want to move and why?

3. Why did one of Augustine's friends abandon Christianity and what happens after that?

4. How does Augustine feel about the Christianity he comes in contact with and what does he observe about the morals of Christians?

5. Basically, what is Confessions about?

6. What type of religion ensnares Augustine's interest?

7. As a young man how does Augustine feel about love and what doesn't he understand about it?

8. How does Monica feel about Augustine moving and how does he get around her?

9. What does Augustine say about his "sins" as a schoolboy and his teachers reaction to them?

10. What does Augustine fear about the effect of studying pagan myths when he was young?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Book III, Augustine wonders on the lack of even the basic morality of observance of the Ten Commandments in his vicinity.

1. Of what do you think Augustine believes basic morality consists? Give examples from the text and your personal experience.

2. Do you think Augustine sees a lack of morals because he himself suffers from that lack? In other words, is Augustine projecting his own lack of morals on those around him? Why or why not?

3. Research the ten commandments and choose the two you think Augustine has the most difficulty at this point in his life keeping. What are they? Give examples to demonstrate why you think he does not keep those commandments.

Essay Topic 2

Augustine thinks about sin, and feels overwhelmed with the task of avoiding sin. Babies and the saintly are affected or tempted by sin.

1. Do you think the second sentence above is true? Why or why not?

2. Do you think, given Augustine's definition of sin, that humans can avoid sin? Why or why not?

3. Discuss Augustine's ideas about sin.

Essay Topic 3

The concept of evil is one that Augustine writes about throughout his Confessions. Discuss one of the following ideas:

1. What are the different ways Augustine defines evil as he changes? Give specific examples.

2. Do you view the actions of Augustine as a young man as evil? Why or why not? Use specific examples from the text and discuss the examples in depth in relation to the question.

3. Do you believe most people have a concept of evil, even those who might be considered truly evil by a general consensus across cultures? Briefly explain what might be a universal concept of evil.

(see the answer keys)

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