Swordspoint: A Novel Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Ellen Kushner
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 121 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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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. How long does Katherine say that Richard has to give his answer about the job?

2. Who wins, when Appethorpe spars with Michael in Chapter 11?

3. What is Lord Horn's position on swordsmen's right to refuse a job?

4. What do the wealthy people on the river throw to each other during the Duchess's festivities?

5. What entertainment does the Duchess have at her party?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Richard reply to Lord Horn's letter?

2. What is Alec's advice to Richard about the job Richard has been offered?

3. What interferes with Ferris speaking privately with Basil after their dinner together?

4. What do the houses in Old Market look like?

5. What happens when Alec wakes Richard during the night, after Richard's meeting with Katherine?

6. What explanation does Lord Ferris give Katherine for asking her to stay with himself, Lord Horn, and Basil?

7. Why doesn't it matter what Michael is wearing at the Duchess's party?

8. What does Richard St. Vier give his landlady when he first sees her in the novel, and why?

9. How does Richard describe his relationship with Alec to Katherine?

10. What does Ginnie Vandall think of Richard's performance in the sword fight?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Several of the characters in the novel take self-destructive action. Discuss self-destruction in the novel.

1) Why is Alec self-destructive? How does Richard respond to his self-destructive tendencies?

2) In what ways is Richard self-destructive? How does he put himself in harm's way?

3) What other characters are self-destructive? How do they harm themselves through their actions or inactions?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss rulership and leadership in the novel, where the nobility in the upper class has complete control over rulership of the country.

1) How do the nobles view rulership? What does the position of leader mean to the leadership themselves?

2) How does Basil view rulership? What is his goal as a leader, and the closest thing the society has to a king?

3) What qualities make a good leader in the novel? What qualities make a bad leader? Explain with examples of both good and bad leaders from the novel.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss fairness and equity in the book.

1) How are sword fights in the novel fair or unfair? How do the participants and audience benefit and suffer from them?

2) How are punishments meted out in the novel to the lower class and upper class? What roles do fairness and equity play in punishment and law?

3) What is fair or unfair about how Alec lures swordsmen to attack him and be killed? How does this relate to the class rules of the society?

(see the answer keys)

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