Go Tell It on the Mountain Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Summarize part 1.

Part I tells the story from the point of view of the main character John, a boy whose 14th birthday marks a turning point in his life.

2. Describe the John's upbringing.

John, has had a strict upbringing focused mainly on the church. In contrast, John's neighborhood is filled with hard-drinking, fast-living men and women, who the people of his church hold in harsh contempt.

3. What does John see as he walks to church?

As John pass through the Harlem streets on his way to church, he witnesses the remnants of the night before, stragglers from Saturday night carousing, bleary-eyed drunken men, and women clothed in "tight bright dresses."

4. What is John's attitude towards religion?

Any doubts that John harbors about his religion are kept to himself and outwardly he appears to be one of the "faithful." In fact, everyone in John's circle expects that he will become a preacher.

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