The Left Hand of Darkness 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. Why does Genly wind up on a communal farm?

2. What happens to Genly's passport, once he enters Orgoreyn?

3. What do the Commensals want to do with the information Genly gives to them during lunch?

4. Could the Foretellers answer the Lord of Shorth's question? What happened?

5. Before he dies, what does Estraven II do?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Estraven do to make Genly angry with him? What is the significance, to Genly, of Estraven's behavior?

2. What is the Thangering Fastness?

3. How does Chapter 7 tie into Genly's story?

4. What happens to a pregnant Gethenian's body?

5. What communicates the imagery of facade and veneer in Chapter 10?

6. What themes are present in Chapter 5?

7. What is Genly's impression of Orgoreyn?

8. What is the nature of the relationship between Karhide and Orgoreyn?

9. Why are the non-human prisoners drugged, aside from interrogation purposes?

10. After the reception for Genly is called off, what is the advice Estraven gives to him?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Much of Chapter 18, which bears strong themes of isolation, revolves around Genly and Estraven in their tent. Please explain whether or not you believe the tent is an illustration of, or a haven from, the isolation and why. Use passages from the novel (not just Chapter 18) to back up your statements.

Essay Topic 2

Compare and contrast kemmering and love, as explained in "The Left Hand of Darkness," with marriage and love in today's society.

Essay Topic 3

Was it a necessary or a needless thing for Estraven to allow Tibe's men to kill him? Why or why not? Did Estraven allow his death to happen in order to protect Genly, or did he commit suicide to avoid deportation to Orgoreyn? Please support your answers with specific references to the text.

(see the answer keys)

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