The Examination 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 is Chen's rank on the next to the last examination?

2. Why is Chen torn over the last question?

3. On what topic is Chen's last essay?

4. Where are Hong and Chen housed in Beijing?

5. What do three scholars want to do with Chen?

Short Essay Questions

1. What happens with Hong after he receives the message from Tang?

2. What does Chen do that ends his friendship with Yuying and what does she do about it?

3. What does Hong do while Chen is studying?

4. Where does the boat stop and Chen looks for Meng Dafu? What do the brothers do after that?

5. What do the river pirates do when they board the boat?

6. How did Chen do on the examination, what is he called and who gives him his diploma?

7. How does Wang Chih get away from the army?

8. Where is Hong taken by the pirates, who does he meet and what does that person tell him?

9. How is Chen feeling when he starts his examination in Beijing and how does he feel at the end of it?

10. What is the examination in Beijing going to be?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss one of the following:

1. Thoroughly discuss how the setting informs the plot in "The Examination".

2. Trace and analyze one major theme of "The Examination". How is the theme represented by symbolism? By the characters' behaviors? By the action?

3. Trace and analyze two secondary themes of this novel. How are the themes represented by symbolism? By the characters' behaviors? By the action?

Essay Topic 2

In the world of academia, historical fiction is often considered an inferior form of the novel compared to "classic" literature. Discuss the following:

1. Why do you think historical fiction might be considered second-rate compared to the classics?

2. Do you think historical fiction has the same elements as the classics? Why or why not?

3. What are the purposes do you think for people reading "the classics"? What are the purposes for people reading historical fiction? Is one purpose better than another? Explain your response.

4. Would you read historical fiction even outside an educational setting? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

The brothers face a moral dilemma when they meet some starving villagers on their way to Beijing. By giving the women some food, they make them a target of the two starving men who may kill the women to get it. They give some food to the men as well, but then leave without seeing what happens. Later in the book, the brothers each admit to thinking the right thing to do would have been to kill the two men so the women might live. The dilemma has no clear solution, and serves as an example of the difficulty in determining and enforcing social justice. Within the narrative, the episode is transformational to the brothers, who are rapidly forming their own ideas about right and wrong in the social order.

1. Do you think the brothers solved the problem with the men and the women and food well? Why or why not? Use examples from the text to support your answer.

2. Why do you think this event might have caused the brothers to think about social justice and order? Use examples from the text to support your answer.

3. How does this event tie in with Hong joining the White Lotus Society? Use examples from the text to support your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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