Johnny Got His Gun Test | Mid-Book 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 did his girlfriend ask him when he was drafted?

2. When does the first snowfall usually happen where Joe grew up?

3. What does Joe find out when someone finally answers the phone?

4. What does Joe see in the snow as he thinks of his life?

5. What is Joe trying to stop?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does he worry about a ring? What kind of ring is it and who gave it to him?

2. What does Joe see on the way home from the train station?

3. Where does Joe see Jose while he's lying in bed, what does he ask him and what does Joe figure out?

4. What idea does Pinky Carson come up with for Jose and how does that work out?

5. Why doesn't Joe worry about loss of appetite?

6. How does Joe feel about the nurse bathing him?

7. What doesn't Joe understand about being alive?

8. Describe the scene at Joe's parents house when he arrives home after his father died.

9. What does Joe think when he thinks of his family and what does he see as the reality?

10. As Joe's pain fades some what does he think about and how does he feel about being deaf?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

If human beings are both body and spirit as many religions suggest, Joe seems to be existing in a grey area--neither fully body nor fully spirit. Discuss the following:

1. What aspects of Joe's present life are most like being in "spirit" form? Give examples and analyze your examples.

2. What aspects of Joe's present life are most like being in "corporal" form? Give examples and analyze your examples.

3. How does Joe's actions over the course of the novel demonstrate his preference for either aspect--body or spirit?

Essay Topic 2

In one of the first chapters, Joe Bonham is thinking about an airplane that comes to town when he is young and the wonderful thing that it is. Discuss the following:

1. Contrast the theme of flying and the freedom it suggests to Joe's situation.

2. What kind of freedom is possible for someone in Joe's post-injury life?

3. WWI is, in a sense, fought over the concept of freedom. Discuss the irony of Joe fighting in a war for "freedom."

Essay Topic 3

This story is written in a series of flashbacks in a stream-of-consciousness style. Discuss one of the following:

1. Define flashback and stream of consciousness. What are some reasons an author would choose to use each of these literary devices? Give examples of each from the text.

2. Analyze the way the author uses flashbacks to make Joe a more complex, well-rounded character. Does the fact that the flashbacks are not chronological make the story more realistic? What are the advantages and disadvantages of flashbacks?

3. A narration using stream of consciousness can be difficult at times to follow and understand because most people's brains when reading are more linear and organized, though the thought process tends to be associative. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the stream-of-consciousness style in this book.

(see the answer keys)

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