Flatland 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. The author notes these individuals have a similar experience in Spaceland that helps explain what things look like in Flatland.

2. Who is the editor, in reality, who wrote the Preface?

3. What does the editor say is the first objection to the novel?

4. What class does the Equilateral triangle represent?

5. What happens to leaders of rebellions of lower classes who are nearly regular shaped?

Short Essay Questions

1. What tools do inhabitants use to discern direction in Flatland?

2. Summarize A. Square's example of how to imagine how inhabitants of Flatland see one another.

3. What happens to aristocratic children who fail exams, and as a result, what does the State feel should happen?

4. Explain why Hoffman believes Abbott was afraid the writing of the book may tarnish his other writings.

5. Based on the end of the Preface, what is the author attempting to say about the ruling class of his time?

6. What is the author's primary defense against the idea that those in Flatland should recognize thickness, and infer a dimension?

7. Explain the shape of workmen and soldiers, women, the middle class, the professionals, and noblemen, or priests.

8. What does Hoffman mean when he calls the novel timeless in the Introduction?

9. Summarize A. Square's explanation of Flatland.

10. Why does Hoffman believe the development of the fourth dimension does not lessen the lessons of the book?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Fear is a vital theme throughout Flatland, as it is used for a variety of purposes. Choose one of the following situations, and explain how fear is used to control the population. Do you believe this power was abused, or used for a just cause? Do you think fear is still used to control populations? Is this a just method of control? Why or why not?

1. The final meeting of the community to pass or deny the Universal Color Bill

2. The proclamation by the Circles at the end of the novel, in terms of those discussing a third dimension

3. The threat of death for irregular shapes

Essay Topic 2

In Flatland, only the upper class have rights to certain privileges. Discuss at least two examples of such privileges. Do you think the upper class in modern society has more privileges than the lower classes? Why?

Essay Topic 3

Class clearly plays an important role in the novel, both in terms of the storyline and in terms of Abbott's use of symbolism to represent Victorian society. Discuss, in detail, Abbott's overall point about the class structure of society, and it's impact on each of the following:

1. Education

2. The legal system

3. Marriage

4. War

(see the answer keys)

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