The Day of the Triffids 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 does Bill recall Walter saying about the triffids and blind men?

2. What is the function of the Colonel?

3. What happened to Bill as a child that caused curiosity about triffids?

4. How does the narrator learn that blindness has afflicted people?

5. What does Bill try to do to the sighted leader of the drunks?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is happening to society at the beginning of Chapter Four, and why?

2. Explain how the seeds of the triffid came to spread across the world, according to the story by Bill of Umberto Palanguez.

3. Do you agree with Bill's statement at the end of Chapter Six that man is lost without his ability to see? Why or why not?

4. Explain why Bill feels a sense of relief at his new situation?

5. What are the potential uses of satellites, according to Bill?

6. Explain the argument of Beadley that the world is better off after the comet than it was before.

7. Describe the different aspects of society Bill and Josella say goodbye to in Chapter Five.

8. Explain what the landlord at the end of chapter 1 plans on doing, and how.

9. Describe why Bill finds it difficult at first to break the law, even for food.

10. Describe the circumstances that resulted in Bill's hospitalization.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Throughout the novel, Bill and the others fight to retain their rights to their own lives. Before the crisis, Bill admits he lived for his job. What does Bill feel following the crisis? How does the crisis affect his outlook on life? In what ways is Bill forced to fight for his freedom throughout the novel? How does Josella fight for hers? What forces are trying to take away their freedom? Why? What do those individuals want with Bill and Josella? Is this fair? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

Explain Bill's belief about the end of civilization, based on his previous comments in the novel about the dangers of satellites and the hostility of the world, as well as his comments in Chapter Fifteen about the walking of the world on a tightrope. What do you think Bill means by this? What do you think he believes caused the end of civilization? What does he say he thinks caused the comet? What is Josella's response to his belief? Do you agree with his thoughts? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

Throughout the novel, the narrator is forced to deal with figures in authority and to choose whether to believe what they say or not. Authority figures in the novel range from radio announcers to people in authoritative positions, such as the Colonel and Coker, and those who wish power over anything else, such as the Commander. Choose one situation in which Bill is forced to choose between following authority and ignoring authority. Explain the situation. What does this say about Bill's willingness to think for himself? About his willingness to blindly follow authority figures? Why is this important? In terms of authority in the novel, what is the author suggesting about military authority? How are these suggestions brought forth (i.e., which characters represent military authority). What does this say about Wyndham's own view of military authority?

(see the answer keys)

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