Nectar in a Sieve Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Kamala Purnaiya Taylor
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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. How far have the construction workers traveled to reach the village?

2. When the construction workers leave the village, some of the villagers are disappointed. Why?

3. How long does it take the construction workers to build the new establishment in Nathan's village?

4. Right after the monsoons end, Rukmani and Nathan venture into town to purchase rice for the family. Why do they return empty handed?

5. Why does Nathan accept the decision of his sons to leave for Ceylon?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Rukmani disappointed when she sees her first-born child?

2. Why are Rukmani and Nathan shocked when they discover their bundles have been stolen?

3. At first, Nathan pays no attention to his new daughter. Why?

4. When Nathan questions why Rukmani is grieving, what does she tell him?

5. When Rukmani and Nathan awaken from their first night's sleep in the city, why do they not eat breakfast before heading out to find their son?

6. Why does Rukmani's mother never reproach her for the long intervals between Rukmani's visits home?

7. When Rukmani learns that Ira is barren, what does she immediately think of?

8. In Chapter 5 during one of Kenny's visits, he notices that Rukmani is still breast-feeding her three-year-old son. Why?

9. When selecting a suitable husband for Ira, Nathan and Rukmani list several requirements of the selected man. When suitable match is found, what requirements does he meet?

10. At the beginning of Chapter 21, Rukmani says that Selvam has ceased to belong to her and Nathan. Why?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Nathan is portrayed as a kind, albeit poor, farmer. While this is generally true, the reader learns that Nathan is all too human and makes mistakes too.

a. Describe Nathan's character strengths and character weaknesses.

b. Give three concrete examples from the story that reflect one of Nathan's character strengths from the answer above.

c. Give three concrete examples from the story that reflect one of Nathan's character weaknesses from the answer above.

d. Identify Nathan's greatest mistake. Why does he confess to Rukmani and how does she react to his news?

Essay Topic 2

In the Indian village, daughters are seen as a burden, while sons are seen as a benefit.

a. Why are daughters seen as a burden? Give examples from the story to support your reasoning.

b. Why are sons seen as a benefit? Give examples from the story to support your reasoning.

c. Is the same true today, daughters are a burden, while sons are a benefit? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

The opening of the tannery impacts life in the village in many ways, both positive and negative.

a. Describe three positive and three negative impacts the tannery has on the village.

b. Describe three impacts the tannery has personally on Rukmani.

c. In Rukmani's opinion, what is the biggest positive consequence of the tannery's opening?

d. In Rukmani's opinion, what is the biggest negative consequence of the tannery's opening?

e. Do you agree with Rukmani's opinions (your answers to c & d)? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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