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. When John's father sees his grandfather after his encounter with the Union soldier, what is the grandfather carrying under his arm?

2. What did the tapestry in John's grandfather's church have written on it?

3. Where does Boughton's son come from before visiting his home?

4. What did John's father give him every time he learned five scripture verses and could repeat them without a mistake?

5. Why does John's father say "I never did forgive myself" after the narrator's grandfather told him about shooting the Union soldier?

Short Essay Questions

1. What was Jack Boughton's first meeting with Lila like?

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

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

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

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

6. What does John learn about his grandfather and his encounter with a Union soldier?

7. What is the significance behind the story of the farmer who was murdered with a bowie knife, and what does that have to do with John's grandfather?

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

9. Briefly recount the story John's grandfather and his friends used to tell about the citizens of a little abolitionist town.

10. Describe some of the events John and his father faced in their journey to Kansas.

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

Throughout the book, John's recollections influence his perceptions of the present. Describe three or four incidences of how events in John's past have colored his response to events happening in the present. And, conversely, events happening in the present cause him to reinterpret events of his past. Identify and discuss three or four of these accounts.

Essay Topic 3

John and Jack have an extended conversation on pages 160 - 173. Discuss the nature of this conversation, the different points raised in the course of the conversation, while highlighting the presence of thematically important conflicts. Note, too, any significance to the fact that the conversation took place in the church - which seems to make conversations difficult.

(see the answer keys)

This section contains 848 words
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