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 get a great reputation for wisdom?

2. What music is playing on the radio that causes John to want to dance?

3. What do John and Boughton see from the porch after spending an evening going over their texts?

4. According to John, visions sometimes only come under what circumstances?

5. What did John and his father trade with the widow for her two boiled eggs and two boiled potatoes?

Short Essay Questions

1. What are John's thoughts on the Lord's Supper? How does his son figure into this account?

2. What are some of John's impressions of Tobias and his son?

3. How does John describe himself as a younger man?

4. How does John describe being "imperishable"?

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

6. What are John's thoughts upon hearing a waltz on the radio?

7. What are the basic facts about John's first marriage?

8. Describe John's brother, Edward.

9. What is the story John's father tells him about John Brown's mule?

10. What are some of John's comments on water?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Christianity and interpretations of the bible play an important role in the book's actions and themes. Discuss whether or not unfamiliarity with the bible is a handicap in understanding Gilead. Consider whether or not this is a "religious" book, and defend your answer. Discuss whether the book would appeal to or be a turn-off to someone with little or no interest in religion, and why.

Essay Topic 2

The constant referral to the relationship between fathers and sons permeates "Gilead." Consider these relationships: John's relationship to his own son; John's relationship to his father; John's father's relationship to his own father; and Tobias' relationship, however sketchy, to his father. Discuss each one of these relationships, looking for common traits, differing traits, and how each relationship contributes to the overall mosaic of the story.

Essay Topic 3

It is conceivable that Jack Boughton and John's wife Lila have common traits. While John's descriptions of Lila are admittedly sketchy, discuss any parallels between these two characters, but also any significant differences.

(see the answer keys)

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