Cosmicomics 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 simile does Qfwfq use to describe the conditions before the Big Bang, though he admits it's inaccurate?

2. What happens to the temperature when light first appears?

3. Where does Qfwfq find Ayl after the colors appear?

4. What instrument does Mrs. Vhd Vhd play?

5. What warms the Earth at night?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Pfwfp disguise new atoms as old ones?

2. Describe the visualization that all the people in the point have of Mrs. Ph(i)nK_0 that leads to the Big Bang.

3. Describe Qfwfq's creation of a galaxy.

4. How is the food that the characters collect from the moon made?

5. Why does Qfwfq fear making a third true sign?

6. When Qfwfq's father says they are hitting something, why doesn't Qfwfq understand what he means?

7. Describe what Qfwfq thinks as he nears the end of the first galactic revolution and believes he's about to see his sign again.

8. How does Pfwfp start acting strangely, as the game between him and Qfwfq goes on?

9. What skills does the Deaf One have that make it easiest for him to climb up to the moon?

10. What does Granny say has happened after the darkness comes again at the end of the story?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The characters in COSMICOMICS have strange names which use symbols not normally found in names. Discuss the characters' names in COSMICOMICS.

1) Why are the names of Qfwfq's rivals Pfwfp and Kgwgk so similar to Qfwfq's name?

2) Why do the characters have unpronounceable names, with mathematical symbols and numbers in them? What affect do the strange names have on the reader? How do the names relate to the scientific subject matter of the stories? How do the names relate to the fantasy elements of the stories?

Essay Topic 2

Each story in COSMICOMICS is based on a snippet of information about science. Discuss the role of science in Calvino's stories.

1) How does the author choose the science information to base the stories on? Why are some of the science ideas and theories ones that have been disproved?

2) What role does science play in the stories themselves? Why does Calvino make his stories fantastical, and what relationship does the fantastical have to science?

3) What is Calvino's attitude toward science in COSMICOMICS?

Essay Topic 3

COSMICOMICS deals with the divisions that exist between the self and others, and the relationship of one's inner self to the society of others outside one's self. Discuss the dichotomy between self and others in COSMICOMICS.

1) How are the characters in "All at One Point" separate from each other and yet unified? What role does the separation between self and others have in quibbling and pettiness? What role does the unification of separate individuals play in the expansion of the point at the end of the story?

2) In "Games without End," how is Pfwfp a reflection of Qfwfq? In what other stories are "others" a reflection of the narrator's self, and to what extent?

3) How are relatives, who share history and genetic makeup, a part of the characters in the story and in some ways an extension of the self?

(see the answer keys)

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