Germinal 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 do the activist miners say they have decided to leave the Advantage?

2. How is Chaval feeling about the relationship between Catherine and Etienne?

3. What does Etienne suggest the workers create?

4. How do the visitors treat the people in the village?

5. Why does Chaval believe he owns Catherine?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe how Germinal starts out.

2. What do the miners do once the visitors leave?

3. What is the social scene like in the village?

4. What does Mrs. Hennebeau do in the second section of the book?

5. After eating dinner in the second chapter what does Etienne do and why?

6. In what type of situation does Bonnemort live?

7. Why do Chaval and Etienne not get along?

8. Where does Etienne move in August and why?

9. What does Etienne hear and see on his walk?

10. What does Etienne do after he is rescued?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In the end, the idealist Étienne Lantier traversed the world of the Voreux and though accomplished little in terms of actual gains, he left the miners with a will to fight; the seed of this may eventually grow and burst again through the infertile ground of the mining pit.

1. Do you think this book ended with any shred of hope? Why or why not?

2. If you had been a miner in this situation do you think you would try again? Why or why not?

Use examples from the book to support your answer.

Essay Topic 2

The implosion of the Voreux signifies the death of the starving monster. In a single strike of irony, the water flowing in the veins of the earth drowns the man-made hell.

1. What do you think this statement means?

2. What kind of picture do you see when you read Zola's descriptions of the undamaged and damaged mine?

Use examples from the text to illustrate your discussion.

Essay Topic 3

By befriending a soldier, Lantier discovers he (Lantier) is not that different from the people against whom he is fighting. Both men share hopes, dreams and memories; both wish for the same kind of life and in the end, they can only be differentiated by the master they serve.

1. Do you think this statement could be true in any situation where one person or group of persons consider another an enemy? Use an example from the text and from life now in the United States to illustrate this statement.

2. If two enemies were placed in a room and had to stay together for one month without fighting do you think they would be enemies at the end of that month? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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