Rivethead: Tales from the Assembly Line Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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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. During his first day of work, before he learned Roy's name, what nickname did Hamper give him?

2. While painting apartments, why did Hamper become friends with Glen?

3. How did the assembly-line workers originally run their radio?

4. Why did the supervisors add another task to Hamper and Dale's job?

5. Why did Hamper and Mike come to hate their fathers?

Short Essay Questions

1. At the end of Chapter 1, what did Hamper reveal about his hopes for the future? What insight did he show about the past?

2. Hamper said that Same-O was quite likely the only genius he ever met at the General Motors factory (pg 66). Why did he say this?

3. Hamper's father, though not a model of determination or reliability, often berated his son because of his poor grades. How did his cursing set the tone of their conversations about school?

4. How is Hamper's portrayal of his mother pathetic at times? Is it a fair character description?

5. How did Hamper's marriage to Joanie end? Given his tone in the writing, what do you think his attitude was during this time?

6. How did Hamper justify his drinking at work? What was his opinion about the people who disapproved of factory workers drinking at work, and is this opinion fair?

7. What did Hamper say about his younger siblings? How did this give the reader another glimpse of family life?

8. "I'm thinking that rock stars, even dead ones, don't come cheap" (pg xix). In the context of the Prologue, what does this quote mean?

9. Hamper ends Chapter 3 with the sentence, "The money was right, even if we weren't" (pg 43). What does this mean?

10. When did the GM assembly line begin to look like an attractive option to Hamper? How did this demonstrate a change in Hamper's thinking?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There is very little, if any, symbolism in the book Rivethead. What is the effect of a literal story? How does this method fit the subject matter?

Essay Topic 2

As seen in several examples throughout the book, how did General Motors treat their employees? How did Hamper's stories shed an honest light on the company?

Essay Topic 3

"Layin' back is a fine reward when you're employed. However, layin' back tends to wear thin when it itself becomes your job. Gettin' loaded, readin' magazines, staring at the television becomes a rut rather than any form of relaxation" (pg 83). How is this true? What part did unemployment play in Hamper's life? How did it change his opinion about working?

(see the answer keys)

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