Under Fire 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 do the narrator and Poterloo do with the three Germans they come across while on their way to Sauchez?

2. What is Labri?

3. How long was Volpatte on leave to recover from his injury?

4. How are Volpatte and Fouillade lost?

5. How do Volpatte and Fouillade capture the two German soldiers?

Short Essay Questions

1. Where do the men go when the bombardment gets worse? What happens when they get there?

2. Describe Lamuse's relationship with Eudoxie.

3. What is the attitude of the men towards the journalists?

4. How does Volpatte regard his wound? How do the other men regard it?

5. What problem do Blaire and the other face in Chapter 18, "A box of matches", and how do they solve it?

6. How do Blaire and the others blunder into German lines while searching for matches?

7. Describe the conditions in which the squad digs the trench in Chapter 23.

8. What does the narrator overhear the Legionnaires talking about? What are they planning, and why?

9. During his six-day leave, how much time is Eudore able to share with his wife?

10. What are the preparations for the offensive on the French side?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Corporal Bertrand is the aloof leader of the narrator's squad. The men respect his leadership, and he clearly is capable, most of his men having earned medals for their exploits.

Part 1) Describe Cpl. Bertrand as a character. What are his major character traits? What sets him apart, other than his rank, from the other members of the squad?

Part 2) What evidence suggests that Cpl. Bertrand is a capable leader? How does he earn the loyalty of the men who serve under his command?

Part 3) Explain, using examples from the book, what Cpl. Bertrand's leadership style is like in action. How does this contribute to the functioning of the squad?

Essay Topic 2

The machine gun is a feared weapon on the battlefield, and rightly so. Its effectiveness is seen in detail in the chapter "Under Fire," and the men discuss it on many occasions. It is the primary reason for the existence of trench warfare, and the cause of most of the misery on which the book centers. The machine gunners themselves represent an almost élite class in the army, being specially favored targets for retribution and looting, and receiving a variety of favors from their own side.

Part 1) Use information from the book to explain what a machine gun is and its impact on warfare in the time of the novel.

Part 2) Explain the men's perceptions and fears about machine guns. Cite specific examples to justify or disprove these perceptions.

Part 3) Discuss some of the ways that machine gunners are treated differently from other soldiers, both by their own forces and by the enemy. Why do these men receive this treatment?

Essay Topic 3

This novel is alleged to be semi auto-biographical, and there are strong hints that the narrator of the story is the author. Still, little is revealed about the narrator, although it is clear that he is not like the other men of the squad.

Part 1) Describe as many details about the narrator as possible. What are his personality traits? What is his background and history?

Part 2) Explain what sets the narrator apart from the other men of the squad. How is he different in speech, action, and thought? What does this say about his character?

Part 3) What evidence exists to suggest that the author and narrator are the same person? Is there any evidence to the contrary? What is the author's intent in this regard?

Part 4) Describe the literary intent of suggesting, but never confirming, that the narrator is the author.

(see the answer keys)

This section contains 1,111 words
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