Of Beetles and Angels: A Boy's Remarkable Journey from a Refugee Camp to Harvard Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Selamawi Asgedom
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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. What would bullies draw over Mehret's locker in "Playground Warfare"?

2. What city did Mawi's family find across the border to be filled with disease and refugees in "Memories"?

3. Eventually, Mawi started making friends through what game in "Playground Warfare"?

4. What upper middle class community did Mawi's family move to upon finding a sponsor in "A New Life"?

5. What refers to extensive systems of codified practices and traditions of combat, practiced for a variety of reasons, including self-defense, competition, physical health and fitness, as well as mental and spiritual development?

Short Essay Questions

1. What symbolism is employed in describing Mawi's younger brother's birth in "A New Life"?

2. How does the author describe his origins in the Author's Note? What is the political history of this region?

3. What stories does the author say his brother told him in "Playground Warfare"? What did he later realize about these stories?

4. What did Mawi's parents believe about education, as described in "Playground Warfare"? Why?

5. What deferred Mawi's family from leaving for America in 1982 in "Coming to America"?

6. How did the children in Mawi's new home perceive his family, as described in "Playground Warfare"? How did they treat them?

7. Where did Mawi's family live as refugees in "The Camp"? Where did his father work?

8. Who agreed to sponsor Mawi's family in "A New Life"? What did Mawi's family make of the sights of Chicago?

9. What did the strangers from Mawi's homeland bring to his family in "A New Life"? How did they help his mother?

10. What memories does the author describe of his childhood home in "Memories"? What does he question about the memories?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Describe and discuss the impact of Tewolde's death on the narrator. How was Tewolde killed? What foreshadowing refers to this incident early in the narrative? How does Mawi describe the aftermath of the accident? How was Tewolde remembered at his funeral?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the figure of Beth in the narrative. What were Mawi's impressions of Beth? How did she help the family adjust to the culture shock of America? In what way does Beth represent an "angel" thematically in the book?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss Mawi's father's sense of morality and the morality he instilled in his sons. Was the story told by Mawi's father about the boy stealing realistic for the time and place in which it occurred? What punishment did the boys face for their actions after stealing the parking meter? Why did they fear their father more than the police officer?

(see the answer keys)

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