The Things They Carried Test | Final 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 did Tim get the idea for the chapter titled "Speaking of Courage?"

2. What did Kiowa's father do?

3. What was Norman Bowker's chief criticism of the first draft of "Speaking of Courage?"

4. What color clothes was the man wearing when Tim killed him?

5. What part of the story is Tim's own?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the main struggle for the narrator/author in the chapter "Good Form?"

2. What two types of truth are there for the author and reader?

3. What important information does the reader learn about the story in the preceding chapter?

4. What happens to Tim after he kills the man in the path with a grenade?

5. Explain Tim's dilemma about how he killed a man on the trail outside My Khe.

6. Do you agree with Kiowa or Tim's point of view about the kill? Why?

7. How does Norman Bowker ultimately cope with returning home?

8. How do Henry Dobbins and Azar disagree about the girl's motive to dance?

9. How does Rat Kiley cope with the difficult mission of up all night, and sleeping during the day?

10. How does Tim react to Bobby Jorgenson's failings as a medic?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

As a new book critic for a top national newspaper, you have just been assigned the novel "The Things They Carried" by Tim O'Brien. Give a full critique of the story and evaluation of the text for other potential readers. What is significant about the novel that makes it a good recommendation for readers? What detracts from the novel's appeal and makes it not a book you would recommend? Finally, is there any way the book ties into modern life and current events to make it timely?

Essay Topic 2

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 3

We know very little about the character named Azar, but he appears always present to antagonize the other men in the platoon. Explain how Azar is a flat or round character, his role in the novel, and if there are any other characters like him in "The Things They Carried."

(see the answer keys)

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