Journey to the End of the Night Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. What is the best description of the main character's personality?

Ferdinand Bardamu can best be described as a cynic and a natural pessimist.

2. What does Bardamu think of the marching parade?

The character of Ferdinand Bardamu thinks that the marching parade of young soldiers ready to join the First World War shows the blind nationalism and stupidity of youth.

3. Why does Bardamu join the army in Section 1?

Bardamu is swept up in feelings of escapist fantasy and wish fulfillment as he races to join the army; thinking that he can be seen as a hero or a champion.

4. What does Bardamu think about the Germans during the First World War?

Bardamu is strictly against the war, during which time he sees countless young soldiers die meaningless deaths. He remarks that he has never had a quarrel with the Germans and does not understand why strangers are fighting each other.

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