Trainspotting Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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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. Who strikes the first blow in the brawl in Na Na and Other Nazis?

2. What is not among the alcoholic supplies that Begbie and Renton pick up for their trip?

3. What performer's concert has Tommy bought tickets to in Scotland Takes Drugs in Psychic Defense?

4. What source of income are Spud and Renton trying to protect in Speedy Recruitment?

5. What does Renton almost do by mistake in his interview in Speedy Recruitment?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do Spud and Renton commiserate at the club?

2. Why is Stevie sad on New Years?

3. What is the cause of the brawl in Her Man?

4. How is Begbie's home-life portrayed at the beginning of Inner Shitty?

5. What do all of the Junk Dilemmas have in common?

6. How does Spud get in a brawl in Na Na and Other Nazis?

7. Describe Renton and Spuds' tiff and reconciliation in this chapter.

8. Why are the mates made anxious by Begbie's plans for this chapter?

9. How does Davie ruin breakfast in Traditional English Breakfast?

10. How does Tommy fall into the heroin lifestyle in Cock Problems?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Undoubtedly, the two most unappealing characters of Trainspotting are Begbie and Sick Boy> Write an essay about these characters. Why are they so despicable? What goal do they have and what tactics do they use to try to achieve them? How do these two characters represent dual sides of sin, complementing each other in their ill deals and transgressions?

Essay Topic 2

Trainspotting takes place in a specific time and place: Edinburgh in the mid- to late-eighties. This is a period marked by civil strife between right and left in the era of IRA and Thatcher. Write an essay about three ways in which the political pervades the narrative:

Part 1) Discuss the rivalry between the Hibs and the Hearts. How do these two football clubs represent two ideologies in this era? Which club do the mates of Trainspotting support, and what does this say about their understanding of the United Kingdom?

Part 2) What happens to Spud and his Uncle Dode when they cross paths with skinheads in the novel? Discuss what challenges Dode has faced in Leith and why. How are these challenges typified in this interaction with the skinheads?

Part 3) Discuss Renton's reaction to his brother Billy's death. How does he connect the death to racism and privilege in a stratified United Kingdom? What does Renton feel about Thatcher, Union, and his Glasgow relatives?

Essay Topic 3

Trainspotting's prose often resembles a series of amusing or pathetic anecdotes related over a pint at a pub. Write an essay discussing how Welsh subverts the frame of the pub story. How does he intermingle the prurient with the profound? In the structure of the novel, how do individual anecdotes add up to something more in concert together? What is the end result of these tales?

(see the answer keys)

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