Moby-Dick 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. To what does Ishmael attribute the hieroglyphic-like markings on the whale skin?

2. What do the men do for entertainment on board the Pequod?

3. At the Try Pots Inn in Nantucket, what is the staple menu?

4. What do Peleg and Bildad do once the Pequod is in the Atlantic Ocean?

5. Where is Captain Ahab as the crew begins coming aboard the Pequod?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do Starbuck and Stubb react to Ahab's stated mission?

2. Explain the mistaken identity that causes Ahab to order lowering of the boats.

3. How does the first day of whaling affect Ishmael?

4. Describe the curious rumor about other fish and Moby Dick.

5. Explain the importance of Chapters 45 and 46 in understanding the enemy Captain Ahab is up against.

6. What potential serious problem does Ahab ignore in order to talk to the captain of another whaling ship?

7. What behavior of whales works to the advantage of whaling ships looking for them?

8. How does Ishmael happen to share a bed with a tattooed headhunter?

9. Detail the problems of holding a whale overnight tied to the side of the ship.

10. What does Ishmael think about paintings and drawings of whales?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay of at least two typed, double-spaced pages on a character from MOBY DICK you would like to meet. Give specific examples of the behavior of that character and explain why he or she would be someone you would like to know.

Essay Topic 2

Write an essay of at least two typed, double-spaced pages on the beauty of whales in their natural habitat. Include such things as how they jump out of the water, the impressive look of their spouts, the way they utilize their tails, how graceful they are for such large creatures, and modern recordings of whale songs.

Essay Topic 3

Write an essay of at least two typed, double-spaced pages on understanding other cultures. Begin with Ishmael's initial fear of Queequeg. Note how Queequeg did not seem so strange after Ishmael sees many other ethnic people on the streets of New Bedford. Discuss how Queequeg begins to see Ishmael as his brother. Finish with how religious prejudice like Bildad's tends to resist inter-cultural understanding.

(see the answer keys)

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