Touching the Void Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Joe Simpson (mountaineer)
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What side of Siula Grande do Joe and Simon have the ambition to conquer?
(a) The South Face.
(b) The West Face.
(c) The North Face.
(d) The East Face.

2. What does Joe assume Simon will do when he finds out that he has broken his leg?
(a) Simon will help him.
(b) Simon will stay and die with him.
(c) Simon will leave him.
(d) Simon will flip out.

3. Who witnesses two climbers in Europe fall to their deaths the year before?
(a) Simon Yates and Jon Sylvester.
(b) Simon Yates and Joe Simpson.
(c) Richard Hawking and Ian Whittaker.
(d) Al Rouse and Maurice Herzog.

4. What is a pitch?
(a) A slide down the mountain on one's back.
(b) A toss of the rope.
(c) A section of a climb equal to one length of rope.
(d) The echo of the ax cracking the ice.

5. What is the elevation of Siula Grande?
(a) 21,000 feet.
(b) 4,500 feet.
(c) 21,000 metres.
(d) 29,000 feet.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is a couloir?

2. At one of the lowering changeovers, Simon smiles at Joe, and Joe realizes that their partnership...

3. What object does Joe have trouble with in the beginning of the story?

4. When Joe falls and lands on the slope at the base of the cliff, what happens?

5. What do the climbers run out of in the chapter "On the Edge"?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Simon cut the rope?

2. Why do Simon and Joe avoid the issue of discussing their game plan after Joe's injury?

3. On page 65 in "On the Edge", Joe says, 'Funny how my anxiety [about Simon's frostbitten fingers] seemed to have more to do with whether he would be able to carry on climbing after we got down rather than concern for his injuries'. Why is this statement significant?

4. On the eve of the summit conquest, what does Simon do that leaves Joe in disbelief?

5. In "Disaster", Joe says, 'In an instant an uncrossable gap had come between us and we were no longer a team working together.' In "The Final Choice", how has Joe's view changed?

6. Describe the Peruvian family that lives in the huts.

7. Why does Joe consider standing on the summit an unsettling anticlimax?

8. Compare or contrast the influence of the incident on The Bonatti Pillar on the climbing careers of Joe Simpson and Ian Whittaker.

9. In "Storm at the Summit", how does Joe get a bloody lip and a cracked tooth?

10. Describe Simon's feelings at the end of "The Final Choice".

(see the answer keys)

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