The Flame Trees of Thika: Memories of an African Childhood 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 did the leopard do to the Palmers?

2. What color was Ian's Somali shawl?

3. How many unmarried daughters did Robin's Aunt Veronica have?

4. What was Robin told would make a good gift for the new couple?

5. How many princes had been blinded by the Abyssinian emperor?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did Elspeth use the imagery of the kitchen beaters to convey the sense that Europeans and Africans were living in parallel worlds?

2. What did the Kikuyu do to preserve memories of the dead?

3. How did the Europeans view the difference between a bribe and a tip?

4. How did the other Europeans and the Kikuyu feel about the Italian priests at the mission?

5. How did Elspeth view the planned hunt versus the actual hunt?

6. How did Lettice Palmer view Hereward's desperate attempts to impose discipline on his workers?

7. How did the Kikuyu deal with the suffering of animals?

8. In what ways did Elspeth find the siafu (warrior ants) the most frightening and mysterious of Africa's creatures?

9. Why did Robin agree with the Italian priests in their refusal to baptize or help Njombo?

10. How did Ian justify the brutality of the Abyssinian leaders he encountered before coming to Africa?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There is a high-spirited debate between Hereward and Robin about the difference between a bribe and a tip. The Europeans were taught to reject bribery, while bribery was essential to running many African colonies. What are the essential differences between bribes and tips? Is it simply a matter of timing? Were the Europeans making it difficult for themselves by refusing bribes? Could they have made their lives easier by adopting the local customs and accepting the use of bribes instead of tips?

Essay Topic 2

Pioneer Mary was known as a wild woman who in many ways behaved more like a man in Africa. She was both feared and respected by both Europeans and Africans. How was her personality shaped by her personal family tragedy (the loss of both her husband and two young children)? In what ways did her personality allow her to survive and thrive in an environment that could be hostile to a European, especially a woman in that day and age? Did her wildness contribute to her ability to thrive? How did she differ from most of the women around her? Was she happier than the others?

Essay Topic 3

After Njombo killed a man in a fight, he had to pay a blood price to the victim's family in the form of goats. Write an essay discussing this method of justice. How did this system help keep the peace for the locals? How did the natives maintain peace and order (they were also known not to steal from one another) if there was no threat of arrest or prison? Why was Hereward Palmer determined to introduce Western-style justice to Africa? How would a trial and prison have affected both Njombo and the tribe as a whole? Can there be different cultural approaches to justice? Or is justice black and white?

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