On Killing Test | Final Test - Hard

Dave Grossman (author)
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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 story does Grossman end Chapter 4 with?

2. According to Grossman in Chapter 3, what does the army use in rifle training?

3. In Chapter 4, Grossman says that every veteran can immediately visualize his what?

4. According to Grossman in Chapter 1, what was the solution the American military's solution after World War II to many soldiers more willing to shoot?

5. Which of the following is an essential quality that makes a role model desirable as listed in Chapter 4?

Short Essay Questions

1. What changes have occurred in recent years to mitigate the psychiatric casualties of Vietnam?

2. What examples from Chapter 6 illustrate a problematic relationship with women in the military?

3. What are the defining characteristics of a natural warrior?

4. What hypothetical situation does Grossman relate in Chapter 3?

5. What factors traditionally assist in rationalization and acceptance after combat?

6. According to Grossman, why do young people idolize entertainment figures more than police and politicians?

7. What factors contribute to a soldier's decision to commit an atrocity?

8. What solution did the American military devise to deal with low firing rates in World War II?

9. What evidence does Grossman provide that violence among youth has increased dramatically since the 1950s?

10. Describe the strange dichotomy between nudity and killing in Western culture?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Throughout the book, Grossman has argues that conditioning has been the key to increasing shooting rates in combat zones. It bypasses the conscious mind's inclination to avoid killing. Write a three-part essay analyzing the types of conditioning used in a military context:

Part 1) What is standard conditioning, and how is it connected to Pavlov's work with dogs? How does this type of conditioning manifest itself in military training? What specific defenses is it trying to overcome? What is its goal?

Part 2) What is operant conditioning, and how is it connected to Skinner's work with rats? To what extent is military operant training more subtly employed than traditional conditioning? How does this conditioning alter soldier behavior in chaotic combat?

Part 3) In military emulation of a role model, who is the standard soldier's role model? What does this role model represent to the soldier, and how does he wish to emulate him? What aspects of aggression and manhood does this affect?

Essay Topic 2

At one point in ON KILLING, Grossman discusses the three external concerns that affect a combatant's choice to kill. Write an essay analyzing these three concerns. W hat is the essence of each factor? What gives it its power over the potential killer? How effective is it in catalyzing the killing and in mitigating the guilt that follows? Cite an example of this type of factor that is used in the book.

Part 1) Voice of Authority

Part 2) Group Absolution

Part 3) Attractiveness of the Target

Essay Topic 3

At the beginning of ON KILLING, Dave Grossman pointedly lists his conservative opinions and prejudices, saying he wants to be clear with the reader as to his natural inclinations from the start. How does this affect ones reading of the policy discussion that follows? Do these prejudices seem to affect his domestic recommendations more than his military recommendations? How so? What ideology is he espousing in the latter sections of the book?

(see the answer keys)

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