Sharpe's Siege: Richard Sharpe and the Winter Campaign, 1814 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. What do the men do when they approach the fort with Harper?

2. Why does Sharpe fear for his troops?

3. In what year does this novel start?

4. Who leads the naval expedition near Gujan?

5. Why does Bampfylde order Sharpe's rifle companies to get some rest?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Sharpe's mission and what does Elphinstone think about it?

2. Who does Bampfylde write the morning after he arrives at the fortress and what does he say?

3. What is Richard Sharpe's role in the coming British action and why is he chosen for this task?

4. What does Harper ask Sharpe, how does Sharpe respond and what does Harper say to that response?

5. How is Killick's ambush neutralized?

6. What does Killick and Sharpe realize when they speak?

7. How does Sharpe prepare first for his mission? How does that turn out?

8. In what state are Napoleon's forces at the beginning of this book?

9. What do the various officers Sharpe meets with think about what the British should do?

10. What does an English frigate do about the Teste de Buch and how does Lassan respond?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

RSM Harper's request to accompany Sharpe begins one of the more risible minor plot arcs presented in the narrative. Discuss the following:

RSM Harper's request to accompany Sharpe begins one of the more risible minor plot arcs presented in the narrative. Discuss the following:

1. What is meant by the term "comic relief?" Why do you think an author interjects comic relief into a story? Is it necessary?

2. Thoroughly discuss the situation with Harper and explain how the situation could be considered comic relief. Do you find it a humorous situation?

3. Why does Harper have to go to such extremes to effect his accompaniment of Sharpe's regiment? What would have happened to Harper had he just gone along with the riflemen after Sharpe told him no? Why do you think Sharpe is so angry to see Harper even though Sharpe greatly respects Harper's ability as a soldier? Would Sharpe have had to be the one to effect punishment against Harper?

Essay Topic 2

In any book centered around the military, leadership of the troops is often crucial with the better leaders able to command the respect and loyalty of their men. The men's willingness to follow a particularly leader can have a decisive impact upon the success of a mission. Discuss the following:

1. Whose command style seems most effective? Analyze the elements of those effective leaders thoroughly and discuss the traits of the good leaders. What makes an excellent leader or commander? Give examples.

2. Whose command style seems most ineffective? Analyze the elements of those ineffective leaders thoroughly and discuss the traits of the poor leaders. What makes a poor leader or commander? Give examples.

3. Is disobeying a poor leader ever justifiable? Explain using details from the text, other books you have read and your personal experience. In times of war, disobeying an order can be punishable by death. Is this harsh sentence justifiable for such an act? Why or why not.

Essay Topic 3

In chapter 11, a Marine named Robinson sexually assaults a local girl named Lucille who is hysterical over the event. Sharpe threatens to hang the man but has Harper beat the Marine on the lame explanation that the rape had not actually been consummated. Discuss the following:

1. Does the beating seem sufficient punishment for the attempted rape? If Robinson attempts rape once, do you think it likely he will do so again? What do you think should have happened to Robinson?

2. One of the horrors of war is that called "collateral damage" in modern times. Discuss what you think that term means and discuss instances of "collateral damage" in Sharpe's Siege.

3. Is collateral damage an acceptable side effect of war? Is it unavoidable? What are ways Sharpe tries to minimize collateral damage? Do you think it is easier in the era in which Sharpe lives to avoid harm to civilians than in the modern era of high powered weapons? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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