Shooting an Elephant 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 two groups does Orwell name as an example of people for whom Satyagraha would be an ineffective political tool?

2. According to Orwell, what word best describes Tolstoy's criticisms?

3. According to Orwell, how does Gandhi compare to other politicians of his time?

4. How did the first speaker, in Chapter 8, feel about freedom of the press?

5. Why does Orwell dislike words such as "constitute" and "phenomenon"?

Short Essay Questions

1. Orwell wonders if entering the world of politics had what effect on Gandhi?

2. How does Orwell respond to the critics of his spring essays?

3. According to Orwell, what were Burnham's political predictions based on?

4. Whom does Orwell name in Chapter 17 as a well-known nonsense poet?

5. What is the meaning of "Satyagraha"?

6. According to Orwell, why don't people read?

7. What does Orwell say about Gandhi's methods of non-violent protest?

8. What factors are ruining literary freedom, according to Orwell?

9. What effect does Gandhi's autobiography have on Orwell?

10. How does Orwell respond to Tolstoy's criticisms of Shakespeare?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Orwell feels that good books should receive long reviews, while poorly-written books should be handled with reviews of only a few lines. How do you feel about his proposition? Have you ever gained useful information from a bad review? Have you ever thought that a good review was too long? Or do you agree that poorly-written books are undeserving of attention? Be sure to cite specific examples from the text to support your position.

Essay Topic 2

Orwell defends freedom of the press by saying that freedom of the political writer, and freedom of the non-political writer go hand-in-hand. Do you agree? Is it possible to have freedom of speech without freedom of the press, or vice versa? How does Orwell feel about the current trend of literary freedom? Do you agree? Be sure to cite specific examples from the text to support your position.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the character of the prisoner in Chapter 2. How does Orwell describe the prisoner? How do you think Orwell feels about the prisoner? What do you think his crime might have been? What is the significance of the officials' merrymaking so close to the site of the prisoner's death? What point is Orwell trying to make with this essay? Be sure to cite specific examples from the text to support your position.

(see the answer keys)

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