|Name: _________________________||Period: ___________________|
This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.
Short Answer Questions
1. Who joins James and Ann at lunch at the beginning of Chapter 7?
2. What country is Volterra likely in, in Chapter 5?
3. In Chapter 7, where has Owen just returned from?
4. What type of church did Owen attend as a child?
5. How many items are on the list James reads to Kathryn at the end of Chapter 1?
Short Essay Questions
1. How is Rowser's lifestyle strange given his position?
2. What is James and Kathryn's relationship with Volterra?
3. What theory about the language cult does James present to Owen in Chapter 7?
4. Why is Volterra in Jordan in Chapter 6?
5. In Chapter 4, what plan does Kathryn have for after her dig ends?
6. What strange coincidence does James notice at the end of Chapter 6?
7. Describe the awkward lunch at the beginning of Chapter 7.
8. How do Kathryn and James discuss their relationship in Chapter 2?
9. Why are the Axtons separated?
10. What conversation do Eliades and James have at dinner in Chapter 3?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
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 2
In DeLillo's novel, objects and words take on symbolic value. Some of this becomes inchoate as a result of age and divine intent. Some of it is created in the mind of the observer. Write an essay discussing the significance of certain objects in the book. What individual is engrossed with this object, and what reasons does he or she give? What effect does this object have on characters? What divine significance does this object have in relation to other elements of the novel?
Part 1) The Acropolis
Part 2) The Cuneiform the archeologist hires a boy to read on a high precipice.
Part 3) The Ta Onomata boulder
Essay Topic 3
Violence occurs intermittently throughout The Names, and when it falls, the violence comes quickly and partially witnessed. It is ambiguous in its intent and raises all sorts of questions. Write an essay about moments of violence in the novel:
Part 1) Discuss the first murder. Who makes not of it first in the novel? Is it witnessed, first-hand by any character? How does Owen connect the violence to the people he met in the cave? What inquiries lead to the connection of the first murder to the ones that came before and after it?
Part 2) How does Owen experience his only murder with the death cult? Is he actually present when the man is bludgeoned to death? Why or why not? In assessing the effect of this violence on him as a character, discuss what leads up to the murder and what follows it.
Part 3) How is David Keller shot in the novel? Who shoots him, and why? How does James Axton, and by proxy the reader, experience this act of violence in the novel? Discuss what concerns and doubts it creates in the protagonist's mind. How is the act explained?
This section contains 1,097 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)