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 buy in Milan?

2. What is the meaning of feng shui in Asia?

3. What does November 22 form as far as Yu's readings is concerned?

4. What is Pigeon used to?

5. What does Nsango go to explain to Ruiz?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Gherman Klimenko convince Paul that Klimenko knows Paul is not just a journalist.

2. What happens to Luong's killers?

3. With whom does Paul meet in Zurich and what do they do?

4. Why is Paul glad he is alone?

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

6. Describe Dieter Dimpel and what he asks of Paul for payment for helping Paul.

7. What does Paul insist upon before he will discuss the report and what is Turnbull's reply?

8. Describe Paul's initial visit with Ruiz.

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

10. Who does Paul meet on the outskirts of Elisabethville and for what reason?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Chapter 3, Paul intuits why JFK is murdered. Paul has always had the gift of picturing events in his head and afterward piecing together the facts that support the vision. His superstitious ex-wife considers it mind-reading, but Paul believes it is more akin to the creation of poetry. Discuss the following:

1. Why do you think Paul's gift of picturing events in his head and afterward piecing together the facts that support the vision is similar to writing poetry?

2. Do you think Paul's ex-wife is actually superstitious and believes Paul reads minds? Why or why not.

3. What type of reasoning is Paul's method of arriving at a conclusion? Does this method seem to work well for Paul in figuring out the motives and people behind the assassination of John F. Kennedy?

Essay Topic 2

In Chapter 6, Paul suggests that Ho plans to hook the stupid, young GIs on heroin as vengeance. America foolishly underestimates Vietnam's power. Discuss the following:

1. Do you think the Americans underestimate Vietnam's power as it is portrayed in the book? (Do not consider whether the book is accurate or not). Why or why not? Use examples to support your stance.

2. Why do you think Paul thinks it is foolish for the Americans to underestimate Vietnam's power? What are the consequences in the book of the United States doing so?

3. What is the concept of vengeance? Are revenge and vengeance the same thing? Do you think it is a viable and useful tactic to hook young GIs on heroin as a means of vengeance? If the United States is responsible for the deaths of the Ngo brothers, whether directly or indirectly, does the United States deserve the vengeance that Vietnam wishes to dish out?

Essay Topic 3

In Chapter 7, Paul goes to Luong's wake, where Roman Catholic and Buddhist practices are intertwined. Discuss one of the following:

1. Trace and analyze throughout the novel how Roman Catholic and Buddhist practices are intertwined, along with other belief systems such as numerology. Why do you think this happens? Does it invalidate or strengthen each religion? Do you think those who incorporate both religions into their personal belief system believe either path is "right"? Why or why not?

2. Trace and analyze throughout the novel how Western cultural influences are merged with those of the Vietnamese. Does this strengthen or weaken the Vietnamese culture? Their political system? Their traditions?

3. When a stronger nation conquers a weaker nation, some assimilation takes place between both cultures. Discuss this concept, particularly the pros and cons of the assimilation. Has a culture that is conquered ever failed to adopt any of the conquering nation's culture? (This question may require research to answer).

(see the answer keys)

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