The Comfort of Strangers Test | Final 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 causes Robert and Caroline's intimate relationship to become violent?

2. Why does Robert meet with his bar manager after he and Colin enter the bar?

3. Who does Robert insist on toasting to during dinner?

4. What information causes the Italian police to become less sympathetic towards Mary?

5. Who does Mary notice as she is drinking hot chocolate in the hotel cafe?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do Mary and Caroline's views on theatre differ? How are they the same?

2. Describe the evolution of the sexual dynamics between Robert and Caroline.

3. Why does Robert hold Colin's hand as they walk to the bar? What does he tell people about their relationship?

4. What does Robert ultimately do to Colin? Why does Colin consent to this?

5. Describe the interactions between Mary and Colin while they ride the river taxi. How are these different than their earlier encounters?

6. Why do Mary and Colin leave late for the beach? What is the motivation behind their change of plans?

7. What does Mary find in Robert and Caroline's bedroom? What is the source of this?

8. Describe the scene between Robert and Mary at the bookcase.

9. What does Colin say in response to Robert's monologue on gender relations? How does Robert respond to Colin's comment?

10. What changes about Colin's appearance in this chapter? How does Robert react to this change? How does Mary react?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Read the two inscriptions at the beginning of the novel.

Discuss the significance of these quote in reference to the novel. How do they fit (or not fit) the novel? Why do you think Ian McEwan chose these quotes? How do they work together to demonstrate the themes of the novel?

Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 2

The setting of The Comfort of Strangers strongly influences the plot of the novel. Discuss the role that the setting plays in this novel. Focus on how it influences the choices and actions of the characters. Be sure to cite specific evidence from the novel to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 3

The gallery in Robert's apartment plays an important role in the novel. It serves as a symbol on many levels. Discuss the significance of the gallery in the novel. Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

(see the answer keys)

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