The Wind-up Bird Chronicle Test | Final Test - Hard

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Final Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Why are the mountains an ideal place for the wig factory?

2. What advise does Mamiya leave Toru with in Chapter 32?

3. What superlative does Toru use to describe Ushikawa in Chapter 13?

4. What personal question does Toru Okada ask Kumiko in their internet chat in Chapter 22?

5. What company purchase at a local high-end hotel is mentioned with particular gravity in Chapter 21?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Kumiko Okada is one of the more enigmatic and yet dynamic characters in Murakimi's novel. She is decisive in her actions throughout but unclear, often, in her motivations. Write an essay about Kumiko's development is a character, focusing on three topics below:

Part 1) What is Kumiko's childhood like, including her relationships with both her brother and parents? What tragedy does Kumiko have to endure early in her life? How does it affect her family? Lastly, what does this childhood mean in terms of her adult life? What secrets must she bear?

Part 2) Why does Kumiko say that she chooses to leave Toru Okada? Write an essay analyzing why a simple act of infidelity spurs her to end her marriage entirely. What does Kumiko discover about herself that she did not know when she married Toru?

Part 3) What happens to Kumiko at the end of the novel, and how is this final turn of events connected both to her childhood and her decision to marry Toru? Conclude the essay by tracking Kumiko's motivation up to this point.

Essay Topic 2

In The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Haruki Murakami juxtaposes the fantastical with a sort of general malaise that permeates modern Japanese society. Write an essay about this general malaise, describing how it manifests itself in the business world, in politics, and in popular culture. How do both Toru Okada and May Kasahara choose to ignore this malaise? Do they drop out of society? Conclude by discussing how this portrait of Japan reflect the Lost Decade in which the novel is set.

Essay Topic 3

Much of the important action of the novel, including the climax, occurs not in the real world, but in dreams and in a sort of metaphysical hotel. Write an essay about these events that occur in a sub- or supernatural world, focusing on three of them:

Part 1) When Creta Kano appears to Toru Okada, and the two have sex, how is this more than a mere erotic dream? Why does it affect both of them in their waking lives? In analyzing this sexual encounter, explain what Creta Kano's profession is, and how it relates. Why does she come to Toru's dream?

Part 2) Write a paragraph describing Toru Okada's first trip to the metaphysical hotel. What is he doing in the real, waking world that allows him entry? When Toru emerges, what has changed about him? Is this change emotional or physical?

Part 3) Describe the climax of the novel as it takes place in the hotel. What very real dangers does Toru Okada face and what achievement does he have in his conflict with Noboru Wataya? What does he understand by the end? How are his actions in the hotel reflected in his waking life?

(see the answer keys)

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