Touching the Void Test | Final Test - Hard

Joe Simpson (mountaineer)
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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. Gloria and Norma are gawping at Simon. Why?

2. In Bomb Alley, Joe sees the footprints of Simon and Richard. What does he think this means?

3. What does Joe not want to lose sight of on the glacier?

4. What does Simon say he and Joe have changed by climbing the mountain?

5. What does Joe do when the voice tells him what to do?

Short Essay Questions

1. After learning that the rope had been cut and after getting some sleep in the crevasse, what are Joe's thoughts about the end of his life?

2. When Simon sees the cliff over which Joe had been hanging, how does he feel?

3. When does the "voice" utter its first words of discouragement? What does it tell Joe?

4. Through the moraines, Joe's watch is a strong preoccupation. Besides pain, what is his obsession?

5. What logic does Joe use to assume that Simon believes he is dead?

6. How does Joe describe his night in the moraines under the stars?

7. What are some of the reasons Richard gives for their expeditious departure?

8. While crawling away during his escape from the crevasse, what is Joe's most common excuse for stopping, and what persuades him to continue?

9. In the moraines, what device plays a crucial role in Joe's survival?

10. Before setting out across the moraines, what does Joe do with his Karrimat?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What influence does Richard have on the outcome of this story? Is he significant? Would the outcome have been different if Richard had not been with them?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss Simon's inner conflict regarding telling the truth about what happened. How does he justify the fabrication of a lie or the editing of the complete truth? How does he justify complete honesty? Does he believe he will be criticized? If so, why, and by whom? Does he believe he will receive support? If so, why, and by whom?

Essay Topic 3

Joe experiences voices, music in his head, hallucinations, delusions, and blackouts. Research the effects of pain, starvation, and dehydration on the brain and relate them to Joe's ordeal and what he experiences. Are his symptoms surprising? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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