Gilead Test | Final 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. Who was it that said Christianity is a life, not a doctrine?

2. Who is it hard for to see good faith in another character, which John states is a "terrible problem"?

3. What one word does John choose to describe Jack "as he his now"?

4. After Lila began attending church every Sunday, how did that impact his sermon preparation?

5. In John's grandfather's holiday sermon, what does he say the Lord came to him and did?

Short Essay Questions

1. What are two memories of pranks that John and Boughton share on Boughton's porch?

2. What is the nature of the conversation John and Boughton have while Lila, their son, and Glory have gone to the movies?

3. What are Jack's reasons for coming home to Gilead?

4. How does John give Lila instruction prior to her baptism, and what is the nature of this instruction?

5. What moves John to tears during his conversation at the church with Jack?

6. How does John recall Boughton's parents?

7. Describe Della's family situation.

8. What does Jack share with John that acts as a prelude to the novel's climax? Share some details about the specifics of Jack's revelation.

9. What are some of John's reflections about Jack as a youth?

10. What does John believe about the soul in Paradise?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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 2

The author uses dialogue as a narrative technique very rarely. Discuss the author's possible reasons for using dialogue in this fashion, and why it is employed in the parts of the story it is.

Essay Topic 3

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.

(see the answer keys)

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