The Line Becomes a River Test | Final Test - Hard

Francisco Cantú
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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. On page 120, why is Beto upset?

2. Which Italian filmmaker participated in the interviews with the former hit man for the drug cartels in 2008?

3. On page 101, which elderly relative of Cantu's dies?

4. How many children does Jose have?

5. According to Cantu, what is one common way reporting in the media dehumanizes migrants?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Cantu's uncle in Santa Fe feel about the work he has done his whole life?

2. What are the three categories of metaphors that sociologist Jane Zavisca identified in media coverage of migrant deaths?

3. What does the sicario tell the interviewers started to happen in his personal life after years of working for the cartel?

4. What does the sicario, or hit man for a cartel, tell Charles Bowden was an important symbolic part of disposing of the bodies of the people he killed?

5. What does Cantu's supervisor Hayward at Border Patrol suggest as a change in direction for him that will still allow him to stay with the agency on page 111?

6. Why does Cantu tell Hayward he will likely stop working for Border Patrol on page 157?

7. What does Cantu do to try to help Jose when he has trouble with U.S. immigration after leaving the U.S. to visit his dying mother in Mexico?

8. What Greek story does Cantu mention and compare to some of the tragedies he sees playing out in the desert through his job?

9. On page 135, what does Cantu say became the hallmark of Ciudad Juarez sometime around the mid-1990s?

10. What was Cantu's original birth name, and why did Cantu's mother change his name?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In the last few pages of the book, Cantu visits Big Bend National Park on the Rio Grande River, right on the U.S./Mexico border. For a moment, as he stands in the river, he forgets what country he is standing in. What does Cantu's experience in Big Bend represent about his own feelings and hopes for the future as they relate to the border? Write an essay explaining your answer.

Essay Topic 2

Why do you think Cantu chose to include a detailed explanation of Jose's story to close the book? What does Jose's story reveal about the struggles many undocumented immigrants face when dealing with the U.S. immigration system?

Essay Topic 3

What does Cantu's discussion about the rampant femicide in Mexico reveal about the culture in that country, and how does it help to explain some of the reasons for the increase in immigrants trying to cross the Mexican/U.S. border illegally? Write an essay explaining your answer, citing specific references to the text to support your conclusions.

(see the answer keys)

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