The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien 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. How does Tolkien think his writing about the joys of fatherhood will be interpreted by people who are parents?

2. How does Tolkien sign Letter #165?

3. In a letter to W.H. Auden, where does Tolkien reveal his work as a professor originates from?

4. What age does J.R.R. Tolkien pass away?

5. What does Tolkien think drives humans towards certain behaviors?

Short Essay Questions

1. What suspicions are confirmed by Tolkien about a woman's used book in 1965?

2. What wish does Tolkien have for "well-meaning" editors in Letter #236?

3. What is Tolkien's initial reaction when he is warned about his friendship with C.S. Lewis and what happens to change his mind?

4. What important announcement does Tolkien make to Christopher Bretherton in Letter #253 about his connection to childhood?

5. Which familiar people does Tolkien continue to write to in the "Later Years," and which recipients are new?

6. What information does Tolkien provide in his remembrance of C.S. Lewis in Letters #257 and #261?

7. What problem of Sauron does Tolkien describe in his letter to Auden as an example of human behavior?

8. What issues is Tolkien having with the cover images for The Lord of the Rings books and how does he handle the situation?

9. Why, when, and how does Tolkien switch from writing with a pen and paper to using a typewriter?

10. What observation is made about Tolkien's work that prompts him to evaluate Frodo's heroic status?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Analyze Tolkien's relationship with his son, Christopher, based on his letters. Provide at least three separate examples of how he communicated with his son and the effect it had on his writing.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss Tolkien's creative writing process using the information he provides in his letters throughout the book. Be sure to include his explanation of the power of the pen as well as an analysis of the role of improvisation in fiction.

Essay Topic 3

Tolkien offers to give away copies of his manuscripts on two occasions while giving the reader an inside look at his opinions of his own work.

1) Explain the reason why a schoolboy contacts Tolkien about The Hobbit and how Tolkien responds.

2) Describe the way Tolkien refers to his own work in Letter #155 and why he does not think it will be published.

(see the answer keys)

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