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 the triffid do at the end of Chapter Four?

2. Where do Bill and Josella agree the light in the night came from?

3. What does the Colonel suggest the colony does immediately?

4. Why does Bill seem to be looking forward to the future?

5. Who is Elspeth Cary?

Short Essay Questions

1. Explain what Coker wants of the new sighted captives.

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

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

4. What clues does the narrator have that there is something wrong when he wakes in the hospital?

5. Describe the argument between the sighted leader of the blind at the gates of University Tower and the sighted leaders of the sighted colony at the university.

6. What surprises Josella about her actions when she was captive?

7. Explain why the young woman comes to Bill in his room in Chapter Eight, and his reaction.

8. Explain what Bill believes caused the lights that blinded the world.

9. Describe what occurs to the young woman at the end of Chapter Eight, and Bill's thoughts of her.

10. Explain how Coker meets with Bill again.

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

There are many situations in the novel that point out the human need for love and companionship. Bill and Josella become very close in a short time; a young woman offers herself to Bill because she fears he is lonely and thus will leave; Coker joins Bill; and Bill and the others constantly seek a community life. Why do humans in the novel constantly seek others? Do you think humans have an innate need for companionship? Why or why not? How is this shown in the novel? What do you think the author was trying to say about the communities of humans and the need for society and social order? Do you agree or disagree with his thoughts?

Essay Topic 2

The Day of The Triffids was written in 1951, after WWII. Do you think WWII had an influence on the themes in the novel? Why or why not? If so, what themes are present in the novel that lead you to believe so? If not, why do you think, then, that Wyndham references America as a saving country and the date the bomb dropped on Hiroshima (pg. 95)? Do you think there are threads of communism, socialism, the Cold War, and other WWII themes in the novel? How are those themes represented in the novel?

Essay Topic 3

Light is used as a metaphor for hope, freedom, and security throughout the novel. In what ways does the author use this metaphor? How does he show what this symbol stands for? Choose one instance of the use of light as a symbol. Explain the situation. What are the characters doing? How is the symbol used? What is light symbolizing? Why did the author choose light as this symbol?

(see the answer keys)

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