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 settlers hunt in Chapter 12?

2. What word was used to describe a quarrel or discussion?

3. What did Tilly diagnose Rohio with?

4. What had the python eaten?

5. Who accompanied Tilly to Kupanya to discuss the bewitching?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. Why did the Kikuyu distrust hyenas?

3. Why did Lettice elope with Hereward?

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

5. How did the Palmer's house differ from the Huxley's residence?

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

7. Why did Hereward express a willingness to die in a violent storm?

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

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

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Huxleys encountered two "foreign" concepts in marriage during their stay in Africa--the notion of a "bride-price" paid to the prospective bride's family, and polygamy. Discuss how these two practices could have impacted the society in Thika. What would have been accomplished by Njombo paying a family for a bride? Why was he not allowed to marry her without sufficient goats to give? Did the woman appear to have any say in the matter? How did the multiple wives live? What were the European attitudes toward these practices?

Essay Topic 2

Lettice Palmer expressed fear about the potential for the Europeans' work in Africa to disappear without a trace, much as the ancient Africans' work had disappeared. Was it fair for the Europeans to say that the Africans had failed to put a permanent mark on the land? Are city and temple ruins necessary to prove that a great culture once existed? Why would the ancient African cultures failed to have left behind permanent physical proof of their achievements? Why is it more difficult to find out about ancient cultures when there is a lack of ruins? Do Africans and Europeans have a similar reverence for oral tradition and history?

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?

(see the answer keys)

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