A Prayer for Owen Meany 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. What does Owen say about the nuns?

2. What does Owen keep detailed notes on in his journal?

3. What does Owen desire to do upon graduation?

4. When Owen looks forward to his future, what does he claim will be the unifying emotion of his generation?

5. Which famous musician does Owen have an obsession with?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

The novel takes places in a very important moment of American history. The Vietnam War becomes both a machine to progress the story as well as a catalyst for the behaviors of many characters. Why might John Irving have decided to set the novel in this time period? Was the war used as a machine to progress the story, or was there a deeper symbolic meaning to the time setting? Support your theory with examples from the text.

Essay Topic 2

Throughout the novel, both Owen and Johnny battle with the ideas of personal histories and family histories defining them. Compare/contrast the family histories that both boys know of themselves when they are 11. Explain the ways that both boys knowledge of themselves has changed by the end of the novel. Which boy was most affected by the knowledge - or lack thereof - of both his personal and family history? What evidence from the text supports this claim?

Essay Topic 3

Both Owen and Reverend Merrill played a large part in cementing the religious faith of Johnny who vacillated on religion through most of the novel. In an essay, compare/contrast the religious faiths of Owen and Reverend Merrill. Consider how much trickery comes into play in regards to the faith of characters in the novel. What message do you think John Irving was attempting to state in the novel? How do both Owen and Reverend Merrill's views on faith affected Johnny's views? Which had a larger impact on his faith? What changes did each character prompt in his beliefs?

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