The Examination 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. Who is Gao Shi?

2. Who is Bao?

3. What does the Magistrate decide to do to find out if the boys are who they say?

4. What does the magistrate not believe?

5. What has Chen done as a result of his mother's tutelage?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Hong do while Chen is taking his exam?

2. Where does Hong find Ye Pan and what does he do before delivering the letter? What does Ye Pan do when he sees Hong?

3. Who does Hong get to know on the river?

4. What happens as the brothers leave Ma's home?

5. What does Hong do while Chen is receiving his award?

6. What surprises Hong when the boys leave on their journey and how does Chen feel about it?

7. Who visits Chen before he leaves and what does he ask?

8. What is waiting for Chen when he arrives home and who has done it for him?

9. What does Ye Pan tell Hong when Hong gives him the letter? What does he invite Hong to do?

10. From where is Chen returning on a cart and on what is he thinking?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

This novel is more character driven rather than action driven, and obviously there are several characters who make the novel what it is. Discuss one of the following:

1. Compare/contrast the characters of Hong and Chen. Include their goals, sense of honor, abilities and social skills.

2. Compare/contrast the characters of Chen and Shen Ding.

3. Thoroughly analyze the character of Lao Chen discussing both his strong and weak points and how both affect the outcome of the plot.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the following:

1. What is a plot? What are the most important elements of a plot and their definition? Do all novels have a plot? Why or why not?

2. Write a brief synopsis of the plot of "The Examination", identifying where the various elements of the plot occur (Exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution or denouement). Do you find it difficult to identify the plot? Why or why not? What about the various elements of the plot?

3. Identify the major sub-plots and their elements in "The Examination". (They may not contain every element of a major plot). Do the sub-plots add to the main plot? Why or why not. Are the sub-plots interesting in and of themselves? Why or why not.

4. Many writers and critics say there are only a few plots in the world of fiction; it's what an author does with a plot that distinguishes a mediocre book from an outstanding book. Respond to this idea, using examples from "The Examination" and other books you have read.

Essay Topic 3

Oftentimes, a book is more of a character-driven plot rather than action driven, and oftentimes the other way. Some books seem to balance the two. Discuss the following:

1. What do you think it means to say that a plot is character driven? Action driven?

2. How do you think a plot differs if it is character driven versus action driven?

3. Which type of plot do you find more interesting? Why?

4. Do you think it is possible to have a plot where action and character development share equal time? Why or why not.

5. What type of plot do you think "The Examination" is? Explain your response.

(see the answer keys)

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