Travels with Charley: In Search of America 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. What does Steinbeck buy at roadside markets?

2. What is wrong with Steinbeck's travel to these cities?

3. Why does Steinbeck essentially ignore his doctors' advice?

4. To what does Steinbeck compare the futility of trying to control a trip?

5. With what gadget is Rocinante equipped?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is ironic about Steinbeck being an American writer?

2. What misgivings does Steinbeck experience as the day of his departure approaches?

3. What urge has Steinbeck felt all his life?

4. What is Steinbeck's explanation for the junk yards and garbage dumps surrounding the small towns and villages through which he passes?

5. What does Steinbeck discover about the French Canadians in northern Maine?

6. What angers Steinbeck about some neighboring boats anchored close to his just prior to the hurricane?

7. Explain how Steinbeck interjects humor into the book.

8. Describe Steinbeck's encounter with the young sailor.

9. Describe New England voices.

10. Why are Steinbeck's friends concerned for his safety on the road?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Explain why one of Steinbeck's New York friends had asked Steinbeck to bring back any honest men Steinbeck found on his trip. What was the state of the economy, the government, etc. in America in 1960 that could have benefited from authentic, honest men? Do you think Steinbeck ever found anyone who would have qualified? Explain.

Essay Topic 2

Explain the Cold War in America. Why are Steinbeck and the people he meets so obsessed with it? How does Steinbeck come to terms with the Cold War in order to live his life with some sort of calm?

Essay Topic 3

What lessons about bureaucracy does Steinbeck learn at the U.S.-Canadian border? What are Steinbeck's opinions about governments, their laws and the people they put in place to enforce them? How does Steinbeck separate his hate for governments from his love for countries?

(see the answer keys)

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