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. What does John's wife give him at breakfast on his birthday, wrapped in tissue paper?

2. What does Jack say he turns to for solace?

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

4. How old is John in 1947?

5. What day does John consider his day of rest?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does John explain the futility of defending beliefs?

2. Describe the nature of the letters Edward is sending home to his father and brother.

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

4. 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.

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

6. How does John recall Boughton's parents?

7. How does John recall Jack's baptism?

8. What is John's response to the possibility that there may be something approaching love between Lila and Jack?

9. What is the nature of John and Jack's first discussion at the church?

10. John states that he doesn't forgive Jack, writing "I wouldn't know were to begin." What provokes this statement?

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

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.

Essay Topic 3

C. S. Lewis wrote a partial autobiography, "Surprised by Joy," in 1955. This same concept, of being surprised by feelings of joy, elation, or even peace, is a common thread in "Gilead." Describe evidences in John's life that show that many times he was "surprised by joy," and how this gives understanding into both his character and how he responds to various situations in the book.

(see the answer keys)

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