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. Why do the other men try to coax Volpatte into sharing his story?

2. What do the men concede with regards to the "shirkers"?

3. When Chapter 2 opens, how long has the war been going on?

4. What is Tirloir's nickname?

5. Was does Poterloo discover about his wife?

Short Essay Questions

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

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

3. What are some of the reasons that the men at the depot use to explain why they are not fighting?

4. Describe Lamuse's relationship with Eudoxie.

5. Where is Fouillade from, and what is his hometown like?

6. What are some of the predictions made by the invalids?

7. How prepared are the men for a gas attack?

8. What do Volpatte and Fouillade do between the time they are sent to the shell-hole and the time they are found by their unit?

9. How adequate are the rations and wages issued to the men?

10. What does Volpatte do at the depot after recovering from his injuries?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The author makes it a point to center the narrative spotlight on a number of inexplicable or irrational actions on the part of the French army and its officers. The army does much that makes little sense, and this tends to reinforce the theme of hopeless and pointless waste.

Part 1) Describe some examples of actions on the part of the French army and its officers that seems to make little sense.

Part 2) Explain the reaction of the men of Bertrand's squad to this irrationality. Cite specific examples of these reactions and explain their significance.

Part 3) Speculate as to the reasoning behind some of these unexplained or mysterious actions. Could there be well-founded explanations for some of these behaviors? In the case of actions with no apparent explanation, speculate about how such an action became sanctioned and approved by the military.

Essay Topic 2

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?

Essay Topic 3

Despair is a constant threat in the novel. Many characters find unique ways to fight against despair and some are consumed by it. It is the source of strange behavior and adaptive strategies, and the cause of some seemingly suicidal actions.

Part 1) Explain the theme of despair as it occurs in the novel. How does this threat compare to other threats of trench life and warfare?

Part 2) Discuss some of the strategies some of the men develop to stave off despair. How well do these strategies fare. Explain examples of the men falling into complete despair.

Part 3) Using examples from the last chapters of the book, give a last analysis of the theme of despair. How much does it affect the men overall? How successful can they be, in the end, in fighting it off?

(see the answer keys)

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