Essay Topics/Writing Assignments
These 20 essay questions can be used as essay questions on a test, or as stand-alone essay topics for a take-home or in-class writing assignment. Students should have a full understanding of the text in order to answer these questions. They ask for a thorough analysis of the text.
1. What effect does World War II have on Ondaatje's novel? How does it add to the story? What impact does the war have on characters, and how might they be different had the story been set during a different time?
2. Compare and contrast the characters of the English patient and Caravaggio. How are their lives different? How are the characters the same?
3. Identify at least three instances of foreshadowing in Ondaatje's novel. Why would Ondaatje include these instances? How would the story change if they had not been included?
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