Murder in the Cathedral Test | Final Test - Hard

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

Short Answer Questions

1. Why does Beckett tell the people that he may never preach to them again?

2. What is one of the reasons Beckett would allow himself to be killed?

3. How does Beckett close his sermon?

4. In the opening of the Interlude, how does Beckett describe his sermon to the audience?

5. How does Beckett feel about martyrs?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

From the beginning of Murder in the Cathedral, we are told of the monotonous and rather unfulfilled lives that are led by the women of Canterbury. In one instance we are told that they believe they are "living and party living."

1) How is the return of Thomas Becket to Canterbury a good thing for its people? What can he offer them that they have been missing in their lives?

2) How does Becket's return affect them negatively?

3) Using examples from the text, how can monotony be a good thing? How is it bad?

Essay Topic 2

The three Priests have been without the Archbishop's leadership for seven years. His return is important to their spiritual well-being.

Part 1) What is the Priests' outlook on Becket's return? What is the opinion of the First Priest? The Second? The Third?

Part 2) Compare the similarities and differences between the individual opinions of the Priests and that of Becket's in regard to his return. What viewpoints do these people represent?

Part 3) Describe how Becket's return was important to these three men and how it reflects the needs of the community of Canterbury as a whole. What is his relationship to this group?

Essay Topic 3

In Part II, the Fourth Knight states that "there are times when violence is the only way social justice can be secured." They have just killed an important political figure to bring about what they perceive to be order, and they believe it to be justified.

1) Can you see the Knight's point of view on this matter? Explain why they may or may not be justified in their actions.

2) Use an important historic event that you believe parallels the Knights belief. Look at the details of such events as the 1968 Democratic National Convention or the Rodney King riots. You may even use examples of executions and the death penalty (i.e. The hanging of Saddam Hussein). Compare your example to that of the murder of Thomas Becket. Looking at your evidence, do you believe that violence can bring about a peaceful end?

(see the answer keys)

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