Gilead 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. How did John break his finger when he was 22?

2. Growing up, John was ____________________ than most of his childhood friends, saying the trait "ran in his family."

3. When John was a child, what did he think the purpose of steeples were?

4. How did John get a great reputation for wisdom?

5. What is the color of John's son's favorite shirt?

Short Essay Questions

1. According to John, what are some of the strangest things about being in the ministry?

2. What is the contrast between John's father and his grandfather's views on war?

3. How does John describe being in the world at night?

4. What are John's feelings and descriptions of baptism?

5. Describe the moment of communion John experiences in the ruins of the burned-out church.

6. What are some of the key aspects of John's life that he recounts to his son?

7. How does John describe being "imperishable"?

8. What are John's feelings about baseball, and what incidents contributed to those feelings?

9. What was the nature of the meeting John had with the church trustees regarding the church building?

10. What three things does seeing Jack playing catch with John's son remind him of?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Several important truths about Jack Boughton are revealed on pages 217 - 233. Identify these truths, and discuss how it is shown that Jack might be developing some sense of character.

Essay Topic 2

John's wife and son remained unnamed for the majority of the book. His wife's name is heard only from the mouth of Jack Boughton late in the novel. Discuss why Robinson chose not to reveal these names, taking into consideration John's relationship with his immediate family and how he views the two in his own life.

Essay Topic 3

"Gilead" has a structure like few other novels. Discuss why Robinson chose to not use chapters or other obvious breaks, how this adds or takes away from an understanding of the book, and how such a narrative propels the plot. Consider: Could "Gilead" have been improved by the inclusion of chapter breaks or other demarcations?

(see the answer keys)

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