In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex Test | Final Test - Hard

Nathaniel Philbrick
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Which one of the following is not included in the museum's exhibit of the Essex?

2. How long after the sinking of the Essex is Chase's account of the ordeal available as a book?

3. What direction do the winds blow from in the trades for seventy percent of the year?

4. What do the men on Henderson Island think the gunshot is when it is fired in Chapter 13?

5. What year is it when Chapter 12 begins?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Herman Melville is inspired by the Essex to write one of the most well known books in literature.

1) Explain how Melville first learns of the Essex's voyage.

2) Describe Melville's experiences in whaling and how they contribute to his book.

3) Analyze the connection of the Essex to Moby Dick along with the similarities and differences in the two epic stories.

Essay Topic 2

Captain Pollard's decision making abilities is the subject of Philbrick's criticism in the book.

1) Describe in detail three decisions that Pollard makes during the Essex's whaling trip as well as after it sinks and how those decisions are influenced.

2) Explain the role that Pollard's decisions have in the outcome of the trip and the survival of the crew.

3) Analyze Philbrick's position on Pollard's ability to make decisions and overrule his crew.

4) Compare the way Pollard handles a complaint from the crew with the other situations he must deal with.

Essay Topic 3

Explain in detail how Pollard's and Chase's boats are rescued in different areas and the varying routes that the crew members take back to Nantucket. Also, include a description of how the three men are rescued on Henderson Island, the difficulties with the rescue, and the unknown status of the third whale boat from the Essex.

(see the answer keys)

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