Visit to a Small Planet 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. How long did it take for Kreton to reach Earth?

2. What does Conrad ask Ellen to do after discussing his dreams about them on a farm?

3. What does Conrad note Ellen can do at the same time as making love?

4. Which uniform does Kreton say he prefers?

5. What does Roger report General Powers advises the family do?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Kreton view his race as superior?

2. What reasons does Kreton give for not explaining where his planet is, and what does he admit his species does not do, as part of the conversation?

3. Describe the interview with Powers by Roger.

4. Delton 4 says Kreton sees the world as his plaything. Do you think this is accurate?

5. How does raising the rifles in the world help to start a war?

6. What is each character thinking at the end of Act I?

7. Describe the scene when Kreton reveals his power. What can he do? How does he prove it?

8. What happens when Powers threatens to take Kreton's ship apart?

9. Kreton tells Conrad that humans are "blood thirsty savages." Do you believe this is true?

10. Explain why Kreton's race no longer multiplies.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Kreton argues that human beings are particularly adept at war, and that they specialize in it.

Part 1. Do you agree with Kreton? Why or why not? What makes us, as humans, good at war?

Part 2. Kreton also notes major scientific discoveries are found during war. Why is this true? What causes discoveries to be found during war? Does this argue for the use of war as a method of technological advancement? Why or why not? Would these discoveries have been made outside of war? Why?

Part 3. History is full of records of war. Why do humans engage in wars? What are some of the causes? Does this support or refute Kreton's position that humans specialize in war? Why?

Essay Topic 2

The role of women in "modern" society is another theme that runs throughout the novel. Reba and Ellen play two drastically different characters in the play, and Vidal seems to be representing two sides of the same coin with their behaviors. Compare and contrast the roles of Ellen and Reba to discover their representation of women in the novel. What are their reactions to things? Why do they react the way they do? What does this say about their representation of women? Do their behaviors change? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

Kreton and Ellen represent dueling forces in "Visit to a Small Planet" and have a major impact on the lives of the other characters in the play.

Part 1. Compare and contrast the characters of Kreton and Ellen by the end of the play. How are these characters the same? How are they different? What changes do the go through as the play moves forward?

Part 2. What would the result have been if Ellen's character had not evolved through the play? Be sure to use information from the novel to discuss your answer.

Part 3. What are the motivations for the actions of each of the characters? Are these motivations similar or different? Why?

(see the answer keys)

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