Friedrich Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Hans Peter Richter
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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 does the narrator's father find after joining the Nazi party?

2. When is the narrator born?

3. What teacher asks his students to remain after school in his class?

4. Where does the narrator take Friedrich?

5. What does the teacher tell the students?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the date and setting and milieu at the opening of this novel and what major characters are introduced?

2. Do you think Herr Schneider should have listened to the narrator's father about leaving Germany?

3. Why do you think Friedrich says "Heil, Hitler" outside the department store?

4. Explain the situation with Frau Penk and why she gives up her position with Mrs. Schneider.

5. What indications are there that Friedrich and his mother enjoy a good relationship?

6. What is the first couple of indications in this book that this story will have something to do with the persecution of the Jewish people?

7. What does Friedrich do after the verdict and what is the judge's response? Why do you think Friedrich responds the way he does?

8. How does Friedrich's relationship with his mother contrast to that of the narrator's relationship with his mother?

9. What does the speaker at the meeting talk about and what is Friedrich's reaction?

10. What is the landlord's reason for telling the Schneiders they have to vacate and does the reason seem fair?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

1. The book Friedrich does not go into the horror of concentration camps or the wholesale murder of millions of Jews (and other unacceptable people), yet there are plenty of tragic events that point the way to the larger event that is the Holocaust. Why do you think the author chose to address the issue of the Holocaust in this way? (Keep in mind of the intended audience). Is the author's approach effective? Does it reveal enough of the tragedy of the events of Nazi Germany to convince a reader of the extent of Germany's genocide of a group of people?

2. Research pre-WWII Germany and write an essay about the reasons that Germany is vulnerable to the extent that it is willing to go down the path of mass murder. Does anything justify the German people's actions?

3. Research the aftermath of Germany's actions in pre-WWII and WWII in its concentration camps. Do you think Germany received just retribution? Why or why not? What do you think should have happened to Germany?

Essay Topic 2

In the chapter, "The Way to School," we see not the first evidence of the growing violence towards Jews, but the most overt one in the book so far. Choose one of the following questions and write a well-developed, cohesive essay using examples from the text and your research or personal experience:

1. Hitler calls for a one-day boycott of Jewish businesses on Saturday, April 1, 1933; this chapter is probably based upon that proclamation. Learn what you can about this boycott and write an essay telling about how widespread it was, the consequences of it, and if it was considered successful.

2. Friedrich and the narrator are only about eight years old and do not understand the hatred and fears of adults. They greet Mr. Rosenthal, a shop owner whose shop is being blocked by a man with a swastika armband. What can we learn from children about accepting differences? What if very young children of the Arab and Western and Israeli worlds got together (before they are too strongly influenced by adults)? What do you think would happen? Would they share their toys? Would they be hateful because someone is of a different race or religion, etc.? Write a speculative essay about what children can teach adults about accepting others.

3. How effective in general are boycotts? Research the history of boycotts and choose several to study and compare and contrast.

Essay Topic 3

In the chapter named "Grandfather," Grandfather inspects the hands before he will shake them and the bottoms of his shoes for proper polishing. He assumes the position at the head of the table and never fails to remind Father of his failure to take care of his family. Answer of the following questions in a well-developed, cohesive essay using examples from the text and your research or personal experience:

1. How does the Grandfather attempt to control his son and his son's family? Give specific examples.

2. What do you think is the main reason for this attempt at control?

3. How do you think the grandfather's personality might be a metaphor for the "personality" of the Nazi regime?

(see the answer keys)

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