Typee: A Peep at Polynesian Life [Edited by George Woodcock] 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. Under what condition will Kory-Kory allow Toby to go to the shore to meet the boat?

2. Where does the narrator plan to go when he deserts his ship?

3. What does Mehevi want information about from Toby and Tommo?

4. How big is the island of Nukuheva?

5. What do Toby and the narrator know about the Typees?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Tommo feel about his time on the Dolly?

2. What plans do Toby and Tommo make for escape?

3. Describe Toby and Tommo's escape from the ship.

4. Toby and Tommo follow a footpath. Where does it lead them, and how do they proceed?

5. Why would it be dangerous for Tommo to desert from his ship, and how does he plan to avoid the danger?

6. What does Tommo see as his ship comes into Nukuheva bay?

7. What happens to Tommo's health as he and Toby make their way around in the mountains?

8. What is life like on the whaling ship for Tommo?

9. Describe the residents of the island of Nukuheva.

10. What are the Ti and the Hoolah Hoolah grounds?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What role has Polynesia played in the American or Western imagination? What have the Pacific islands meant for white people? How was Melville trading on this impression? How did he resist it with his "peep" into Polynesian life? How did he reinforce the stereotypical views of Polynesia?

Essay Topic 2

What is Melville's relationship with his narrator? Are we as readers limited to the narrator's perspective, or does the author give us other perspectives, including his own (authorial) perspective? Describe the different lenses through which we see the action in "Typee".

Essay Topic 3

After arranging his escape, Tommo is largely passive, ostensibly because of his leg, but possibly because of his personality. In what ways does Tommo act, and how do his actions change over the course of the book? E.g. in the beginning of the book, he is plotting to escape from the ship, in the end he is plotting to escape from Typee. How are these actions similar or different?

(see the answer keys)

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