Going After Cacciato Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Tim O'Brien
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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. The sight of which soldier fills Sidney Martin with pride in Chapter 25?

2. In Chapter 25, why is the mountain road particularly bad for a march?

3. What item does Cacciato strew on the road to guide Third Squad?

4. In Chapter 14, why is Frenchie Tucker about to leave the front when he is shot?

5. In Chapter 16, what do the men start doing to pass time during a period of relative quiet?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Paul Berlin succeed in keeping Sarkin Aung Wan with Third Squad?

2. What surprise announcement does the Lieutenant make to Third Squad in Chapter 26?

3. What difficulty arises when Lieutenant Corson tries to leave Li Van Hgoc's tunnel in Chapter 15?

4. How does Sarkin Aung Wan react to Paul Berlin's description of their mission?

5. Why does Paul Berlin feel guilty for Frenchie Tucker and Bernie Lynn's deaths?

6. What decision does Paul Berlin make at the observation tower in Chapter 8?

7. Why do living circumstances become awkward for Third Squad in Delhi?

8. How does the Squad figure out that they are on the same train that Cacciato took?

9. How does the quiet of the village in Chapter 16 become insidious?

10. How does Third Squad end up on a cart with three Vietnamese women in Chapter 6?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Choose one member of the Cacciato search party and write an essay analyzing his attitude toward the mission. At any point in the mission, does he grow convinced that Third Squad is deserting? What was his attitude toward Cacciato before Cacciato disappeared into the jungle? How does the mission to Paris change this character's attitude toward the world, the war, and his fellow soldiers?

Essay Topic 2

Midway through Going After Cacciato, Paul Berlin states that a fellow soldier's death can only be classified as a fact. Write an essay on the topic of death in the novel. Is there such a thing as a good death or a bad death in O'Brien's universe or is all death equally meaningless? Is there any difference in the way the author presents Bernie Lynn's death and the execution in Tehran? Is there any intimation from Berlin that there may be something after death?

Essay Topic 3

Three times over the course of the Cacciato pursuit, Third Squad escapes certain death with little or no explanation as to how their salvation came about. Write an essay about these instances and what they say about the nature of the Cacciato war story:

Part 1) What does the Squad discover in the VC tunnels on the Vietnam-Laos border? How does this experience inform Paul Berlin's understanding of the enemy, and how - in the end - does Third Squad escape the tunnels? Where do they emerge?

Part 2) How does Third Squad nearly die in Tehran? What eventually saves them, and to what extent do these rescuing agents seem to appear out of Paul Berlin's mind?

Part 3) Which member of Third Squad disappears when the ocean-liner to Greece is suddenly searched? How do the remaining men manage to escape what seems like an inescapable situation?

(see the answer keys)

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