The Names Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book 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. About whom does James dream about in Chapter 6?

2. Who is the inspiration for Tap's novel?

3. What country is David Keller going to be air-dropped into in Chapter 5?

4. What specific problem is Volterra having with his excursions in Chapter 6?

5. What scares Owen about religion?

Short Essay Questions

1. What offer does David Keller make James in Chapter 8, and how does James respond?

2. Describe the murder in Kouros.

3. How did James Axton begin working at Northeast Group?

4. According to Owen in Chapter 5, Why does the world hate America?

5. Describe the political argument that James and Eliades have in Chapter 10.

6. How does James learn the truth behind the CIA in Chapter 13?

7. What information does Andahl give about the cult in Chapter 9?

8. How does James follow up on his Mani discovery later in Chapter 8?

9. How is Owen's connection to the cave people addressed in Chapter 4?

10. How has Rowser become more paranoid in Chapter 11?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay about the Northeast Group, what it ostensibly does as a company, how it is represented in the novel, and what it, in reality, is a functionary of. What is James Axton's role within the Northeast Group? What other character is his contact, and how does this character represent a strange intensity unusual for a private company? What does the Group do in the novel, and how are its true functions slyly revealed tot he reader and James Axton alike? What is the fallout?

Essay Topic 2

In the latter half of The Names, James Axton develops several female entanglements that serve as temporary place-fillers for his lost family. Write an essay about these three: Janet Ruffing, Del Nearing, and Ann Maitland. How does Ruffing fulfill his sexual needs as a man? How does Nearing fulfill his paternal needs after the essential loss of Tap? Discuss, lastly, how Ann Maitland provides the most complete relationship for him. What are the defining attributes of this relationship? How does their final moment in the novel resonate as particularly significant?

Essay Topic 3

Write an essay about the Language Cult and how it becomes a symbol in the novel. To what extent does the language cult exist outside of time and place? In what ways is it stateless and oddly innocent? In discussing the otherworldliness of the cult, determine what it represents to the people who search it out. What do these lost Americans long to find at the end of the search for the cult? To what extent does the cult represent a pre-American world?

(see the answer keys)

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