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. Where does Volpatte overhear the gossip of the gentlemen at the depot?

2. How did Volpatte and Fouillade help Sgt. Sacerdote?

3. Why was the veteran executed just prior to the events of Chapter 10?

4. Who is sent with the narrator to find the missing Volpatte and Fouillade?

5. According to Cocon, each regiment includes how many non-combatants?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the "feast of the survivors"?

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

3. Why does Eudore agree to take his five old friends with him when he goes to visit his wife?

4. What do the men believe about 77mm shells, despite evidence to the contrary?

5. Describe Lamuse's relationship with Eudoxie.

6. According to the author, what is important about the men writing letters home?

7. What is the condition of most of the soldiers the morning after the bombardment?

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

9. What is the state of the area around the railway station where the squad waits in Chapter 7?

10. How do the invalids in the sanatorium learn of the war?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There is a wide gap in perceptions about the war between the soldiers who are fighting it and the civilians who learn about its progress from the media. A few times in the novel, the soldiers come into direct conflict with this misunderstanding, but do little to correct it.

Part 1) Describe how the civilians perceive the state and progress of the war. How accurate are these perceptions?

Part 2) How does the media shape the perceptions of the civilians of France? Does this manipulation seem intentional? Speculate about the motives of the media.

Part 3) Explain how the poilus perceive the war. How does this differ from public perception? Why do the soldiers fail to speak out to correct the civilians?

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

Eudoxie is a major character, although her time in the story is brief. She affects many characters and their interactions with her illuminate many details about these individuals.

Part 1) Who is Eudoxie? Where does she come from? What is unusual about her? Why is she frequently seen in seemingly dangerous areas near the front?

Part 2) Describe the effects that Eudoxie has on some of the men of the squad.

Part 3) Explain Eudoxie's purpose as a character. What does she represent, and what themes does her character relate to or affect?

(see the answer keys)

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