Waterland Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is in the chest in the attic that Helen bestows upon Dick?

2. What is not one of the things Tom does in the evenings when he alone?

3. What temperament does phlegm tend towards, as reflected in the mood of the landscape the novel is set in and in the mood of many of its major characters?

4. While Martha locks herself in with Mary, she asks Tom to do what outside?

5. When Harry Crick hears that Mary told her father that Tom is the father of her aborted child, what does he tell Tom they should do?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Carefully consider the character of Ernest Atkinson in Graham Swift's novel Waterland. Trace the mistakes he makes that lead to his social, political, and financial decline in Gildsey and that cause catastrophe for his descendants. Finally, analyze what Ernest's life might symbolize in Tom Crick's narrative about the Fens and its people.

Essay Topic 2

Graham Swift's novel Waterland features several important symbols that recur over and over again--the phlegm-like soil, the chest in the attic and the hidden key, pikes and eels, Coronation Ale, the empty bottle Tom finds in the river, the ruined windmill, and so on. Choose two of those symbols, trace in detail how they are used throughout the novel to point to something beyond themselves, and discuss how and why they are important to understanding some of the deeper truths the novel is trying to convey.

Essay Topic 3

One major conflict in Graham Swift's novel Waterland is the one between the narrator, Tom Crick, and the headmaster of the school where Tom teaches, Lewis Scott. Using specific examples from the book, show what the four root causes of that conflict are--a conflict about personality, a conflict about the school's reputation, a conflict about teaching style, and a conflict about the usefulness of teaching history. Analyze the differing visions of the future that Tom and the headmaster seem to harbor and the implications of each of those visions for the future of society.

(see the answer keys)

This section contains 392 words
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