|Name: _________________________||Period: ___________________|
This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.
Short Answer Questions
1. Who clears two hundred a week by investing only in soy beans?
2. Why is it too late for Wilhelm to make any decisions about Tamkin's character?
3. What religion was Wilhelm's mother during his childhood?
4. Before closing the day before, Tamkin closed out a lard contract and bought what instead?
5. When Wilhelm realizes Tamkin is gone, what does he demand Takmin to pay him when he does find him?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
The relationship between Tamkin and Wilhelm in particular illustrates how powerfully trust can influence people. Select one topic to write about.
1. One way we learn that Wilhelm is distrustful of Tamkin is through his detailed description of Tamkin's physical appearance. What is significant about this description? What does it reveal about Wilhelm's attitudes toward Tamkin?
2. Tamkin is always telling fantastical stories and announces that "facts are always sensational." What does he mean by this? Does this comment help Wilhelm to trust Tamkin or no? Why or why not?
3. Sometimes we are predisposed to either trust or not trust someone. What specific factors in Wilhelm's life set up his acceptance of Tamkin? Which factors in his life also lead him to question Tamkin's intentions?
Essay Topic 2
The last scene in the book is very significant and ties together many of the themes of the book. Select one topic to write about.
1) The last scene is foreshadowed in the book in many different places. Cite at least 2 examples of how it is foreshadowed.
2) The final scene is also a metaphor for Wilhelm. How is it a metaphor for Wilhelm? What does it reveal about his character?
3) The final scene is rich in imagery and language dealing with water. Cite 3 examples of allusions and what they reveal about the story and Wilhelm's character development.
4) The final paragraph is the perfect summation of the entire story, especially the final line: "He heard it and sank deeper than sorrow, through torn sobs and cries toward the consummation of his heart's ultimate need." What is his "heart's ultimate need"? Why do you think that? You must refer to specific examples from the book to support your argument.
Essay Topic 3
Wilhelm struggles with many things in his life, but above all he appears to have lost his identity.
Part 1) When we meet Wilhelm, he has lost a job. How might this event have contributed to his loss of identity? How does he try to get it back?
Part 2) Wilhelm is also substantially alienated from the characters in the book. Does this alienation affect his inability to find an identity? Why or why not?
Part 3) Wilhelm turns to Tamkin for support in his search for identity. Why does he turn to Tamkin? Do you think Tamkin is qualified to help Wilhelm rediscover his identity? Why or why not?
This section contains 2,072 words
(approx. 7 pages at 300 words per page)