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. In Chapter 3, how long do the soldiers have before they get sent back to the front?

2. In general, what opinion do the soldiers have of the local women?

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

4. Where is Fouillade from?

5. Why does Tulacque believe that those who drive the artillery pieces to Verdun are not truly in the war?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do the men first meet Eudoxie, and what is Lamuse doing when they do?

2. 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?

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

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

5. Describe the encounter that the narrator and Paradis have with the four German soldiers.

6. What does the German in the refuge say and wonder about God?

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

8. What religious references does the narrator make while escorting Joseph to safety?

9. How does Poterloo sneak behind enemy lines?

10. What is Volpatte's opinion of the phrase, "If we do return"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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?

Essay Topic 2

Throughout the novel, many opinions of the poilus are articulated indirectly. The perspective always stays with the men of Bertrand's squad and almost always with the narrator, but through the experiences of these men, the perceptions of many other people towards the poilus becomes clear.

Part 1) Explain how the poilus, and particularly groups like Bertrand's squad, who have spent a great deal of time in the trenches, are perceived by the more active forces, such as other formations that are on the march, or the Moroccan Division.

Part 2) Describe the shirker's attitudes towards the poilus. How are these attitudes shaped by the shirker's own failures and vices?

Part 3) Explain how the civilians and journalists see the poilus. How are these perceptions shaped by this group's desire to support the war?

Essay Topic 3

Lamuse is a unique character with strange, but internally consistent behavior. He is eccentric, but extremely loyal to his squad. Among the many normal men the narrator describes being drawn into the war, Lamuse learns to adapt well and demonstrates his strong character at many points in the novel.

Part 1) Describe Lamuse as a character. Who is he? Where does he come from? What is his appearance? What are his personality traits?

Part 2) The narrator often uses comparisons to various animals to describe Lamuse. Cite some of these examples and explain their purpose. What do these comparisons establish about Lamuse?

Part 3) Explain some of Lamuse's eccentricities and odd behavior, as well as some ways that he demonstrates his loyalty and dedication to the squad.

(see the answer keys)

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