The Things They Carried Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Tim O'Brien
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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. How long did Alpha Company camp at the pagoda?

2. What is Jimmy Cross's last request to Tim at the end chapter 2?

3. Where is Lee Strunk when Dave Jensen shows his broken nose?

4. What year does Tim graduate college?

5. What memory forced the men to switch from coffee to gin?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Lee Strunk react to his injury?

2. When Lee Strunk returns from sick bay, how does Dave Jensen react?

3. What was Martha's response to Jimmy's confession about wanting to hold her knee?

4. Give examples of how the men dealt with death.

5. What is Henry's reaction to his girlfriend dumping him?

6. Explain your thoughts on this quote: "I was a coward. I went to war."

7. How did things start when Mary Anne first arrived, and how did they change?

8. What is so unbelievable about Rat Kiley's story?

9. What are Henry Dobbins' tentative plans for after the war?

10. How does Lieutenant Cross resolve his responsibility in Ted Lavender's death?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Explain Lieutenant Cross's responsibility or perceived responsibility in the various deaths of his men. How does he react to each one? Do his actions live up to his words and thoughts of improvement as a leader?

Essay Topic 2

If you were Tim writing a letter to his daughter Kathleen, either at her age now or the age she is in the book, what would be the most important aspects of your experiences in the war that you would want to share with her and teach her about the world?

Essay Topic 3

Throughout the war stories in "The Things They Carried," the men carry and discuss a certain superstition for luck. Detail places in the novel where luck is given importance, and explore its role in explaining the events happening around the platoon. How do the men treat the concept of luck? How does the narrator/author wish the reader to interpret luck as it applies to the various characters?

(see the answer keys)

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