The Nutmeg of Consolation Test | 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. Why do several new men join the crew?

2. What is critical after the attack?

3. Why does Maturin collapse?

4. Who does Maturin spy one morning when he wakes up?

5. What does Maturin send to a Chinese junk?

Short Essay Questions

1. What has been Aubrey's chief concern and why?

2. How does Maturin spend much of his time, and what do the men do besides working on the boat?

3. How does Maturin find himself in a duel and what is the crew's response?

4. Who is William Grimshaw and how does he help provide comic relief on board?

5. Describe Stephan Maturin.

6. How do the English lose hope even though they repulsed the Dyak attack?

7. What does Maturin give Paulton for his help?

8. Where does Aubrey take his passenger after Pulo Prabang?

9. What action does Maturin take with the information he gains from the pirates and what does he hope to accomplish by his actions?

10. What fortuitous encounter saves the day for the Nutmeg of Consolation and what happens with the Cornélie?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

At sea, the commander of a vessel is "God," and failure to obey the Captain's orders can subject one to court martial and even execution. Discuss the following:

1. Should sailors be held accountable for anything they do under orders? Discuss fully, using examples both from The Nutmeg of Consolation and your own knowledge.

2. Why do you think mutiny on a ship is punishable by death?

3. Is there ever justification for a crew to mutiny?

4. Is it just for a captain to have that much power over his crew? What sort of abuses can this lead to?

Essay Topic 2

Many events that happen in The Nutmeg of Consolation are foreshadowed by previous events and/or signs. Discuss the following:

1. Define the literary term "foreshadow."

2. Why would an author use foreshadowing? Do you think it adds or detracts from your experience as a reader? Explain.

3. Trace and analyze five instances of foreshadowing in The Nutmeg of Consolation. Match up what is mentioned earlier and what it foreshadows. Did you guess that each instance of foreshadowing was a "heads up" of something to come? Why or why not.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss one of the following:

1. Trace and analyze the theme of manipulation and power in The Nutmeg of Consolation. Consider the following questions as you write: What characters are most concerned with manipulation and power? Why? What are some symbols of manipulation and power? Symbols of powerlessness? What characters seem powerless?

2. Trace and analyze the theme of war in The Nutmeg of Consolation. Why is Britain engaged in a war? What are some symbols of war that occur in the book? Is the war justified? Does Aubrey and (his crew perform with honor as warriors? Do you think their behavior to the enemy (first the Dyaks and then the French sailors) would be in accordance with the Geneva Conventions (you may need to research this)?

3. Trace and analyze the theme of death. How does the world of Aubrey's time seem to view death? Who tries to avoid killing? Who seems to kill for frivolous reasons? Who seems afraid of dying? Not afraid? Who meets death gracefully? In resignation? With joy? With fear?

(see the answer keys)

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