The Tears of Autumn Test | Final Test - Hard

Charles McCarry
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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. What does Paul want Tom to do?

2. What does Yu explain about horoscopy?

3. Who has refused to read Paul's information?

4. Who are Stavros Glavanis and Jan Eycken?

5. Whose methods do Paul's match?

Short Essay Questions

1. What happens to all the Cubans but Ruiz and why not Ruiz? What does Nsango ask about Ruiz?

2. How do Yu's horoscopes figure into the planning of the assassination of JFK?

3. How does Paul finally break Pigeon and why does his method work? What do they do with Pigeon?

4. How has Molly helped Paul to heal?

5. What happens to Pigeon initially when he is kidnapped?

6. What does Yu Lung say about horoscopy?

7. Briefly sum up Molly's week with the Websters.

8. Who does Paul select for breaking Frankie Pigeon and how does he motivate one of the two men?

9. How does Paul go to Rome and why does he go there?

10. What does Paul tell Molly about his investigation into JFK's murder?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Chapter 2, narration states that Chinese revolutionaries have come and gone in the Congo and the Cubans are now establishing themselves. Neither country has been willing to arm the Congolese rebels fighting the Belgians. Discuss one of the following:

1. Discuss the reasons you think China and Cuba are unwilling to arm the native Congolese (especially the idea of racism). Use examples from the book demonstrating the Cubans and Chinese attitudes towards the people of the Congo.

2. Discuss the theme of imperialism as it appears throughout the book. Who are imperialists? What are the motives of countries who behave in an imperialistic manner? Is there ever a justification for imperialism? Does any justification appear in this book for the American involvement in Vietnam?

3. How do some persons from Imperialistic nations act/think in a different vein (e.g., Paul, Dieter, Tom, and Sybille). What factors do you think influences some characters to have a more egalitarian view of other races/nations? In "real" life, what do you think influences this?

Essay Topic 2

John F. Kennedy is the President of the United States at the opening of THE TEARS OF AUTUMN. Discuss one of the following:

1. Research the Kennedy's administration's policy in Vietnam and discuss how this policy affected the Ngo family. How accurate is McCarry's portrayal of the Kennedy administration's involvement in Vietnam? Do the historical records of the administration's policy to Vietnam differ compared to the novel? How?

2. After researching the Kennedy's administration's policy towards Vietnam, discuss whether you think some Vietnamese would be hostile to Kennedy even to the point of assassination. After your research, does McCarry's book seem more realistic or less? Explain.

3. Do you think JFK could be considered a character in the novel? Explain your answer with specific examples from the text. Would you label him as a protagonist or antagonist? How does Kennedy as a character affect the plot of THE TEARS OF AUTUMN?

Essay Topic 3

In Chapter 2, when Paul hears news of the assassination of John F. Kennedy, a Belgian priest provides the foil for him to admit his love of America and of JFK at the same. Discuss the following:

1. What is meant by a foil in literary terms? How do you think the Belgian priest serves as a foil at the end of chapter 2? Do you think this is an effective means of revealing these aspects of Paul's character? Why or why not?

2. Discuss Paul's feelings about the United States of America and about John F. Kennedy. How strongly do these feelings influence Paul's later actions? Do you think Paul would have investigated John Kennedy's assassination if he had been a Republican? Why or why not.

3. Trace and discuss the theme of patriotism throughout THE TEARS OF AUTUMN. Which characters seem most motivated by a love or their countries? Which seem to have no patriotism or loyalty to their country? Is patriotism always a noble motivation?

(see the answer keys)

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