English VIII Summative Assessment

English VIII Summative Assessment
Part 1: Narrative Reading Comprehension
Read the short story “Harrison Bergeron.” Respond to the following prompts and questions.
Level 2: Comprehend/Identify
1. What is the setting of the story?
2. Why is George forced to wear a radio in his ear and weights around his neck? Why
does Hazel not have to wear any items such as these?
3. Describe Harrison Bergeron’s physical appearance.
4. What happens to Harrison at the end of the story?
Level 3: Analyze
5. Consider the character of Harrison in terms of both his physical qualities and personal
traits. Why is he considered a threat to society?
6. What might the shedding of Harrison’s handicaps be symbolic of?
7. Analyze the reactions of George and Hazel to the televised murder of their son. Why do they react in this
way? What does this tell us about the level of control the government has over its citizens?
Level 4: Evaluate/Connect
Respond to the following prompt.
a. This year, we’ve read about many fictional and real governments that have attempted to closely control
their citizens. Consider the government of “Harrison Bergeron.” Why is it so afraid of diversity and
inequality? What are the advantages and disadvantages of such a society? Is this government corrupt, or
merely watching out for the best interests of the whole? Support your point with specific examples from the
b. Consider the other texts we’ve read this year (1984, The Book Thief, The Kite Runner, Things Fall Apart).
Compare and contrast the government control of “Harrison Bergen” with at least one of the governments in
these novels.
Part 2: Information Reading Comprehension
Read the following passage and answer the questions on the following page.
iPhone: Tracing where you’ve been
Taken from The Week, April 26, 2011
If you have an iPhone or other Apple mobile device, your every move is being tracked and
recorded, said Nathan Goulding in NationaReview.com. Two data scientists triggered a new
privacy firestorm last week by revealing that “without your consent or any warning labels,”
iPhones, iPads, and iTouches track their owner’s GPS locations, store their movements for
up to a year, and stream “geodata” back to Apple. These devices are creating records of
unprecedented scope and detail, said Alexis Madrigal in TheAtlantic.com. “Even searching a
suspect’s house could never yield a full inventory of that person’s friends and
acquaintances, the entire record of their voice and text communications—and all the Web
pages he’s ever looked at.” Now Apple—and cops, prosecutors, divorce lawyers, or anyone
who gets your cell phone—“can have all of that in two minutes.”
“Ooh, Big Brother is watching,” said David Pogue in The New York Times. Frankly, “who
cares if anyone knows where I’ve been.” Banks, credit card companies, online marketers,
and phone companies are already collecting vast amounts of information on all of us.
Indeed, cell phone companies track our movements, too; the only difference is that the
information is stored on their computers, not on your cell phone. And Apple’s not “the only
big bad villain here.” Google’s Android phones, along with BlackBerries, Palms, and most
other smartphones, are tracking our movements, with varying degrees of thoroughness
and transparency.
If you think there are any laws against this, said Jordan Robertson in the Associated Press,
“think again.” Phone companies can’t share information obtained from your cell phone
without your consent, but the government hasn’t gotten around to hardware and software
makers like Apple and Google. Of course, all makers of “spyphones” have their excuses for
snooping. They claim that mining data about our whereabouts will be good for us, because
it will allow them to identify “Wi-Fi hot spots” and create services to fit our needs, including
advertising aimed at reaching us when we’re near a particular store. Sadly, most people
will accept this latest intrusion with “a weary yawn,” said John Naughton in the London
Observer. “Technology fatalism” has set in. Scott McNealy, the co-founder of Sun
Microsystems, once said, “You have zero privacy. Get over it.” A decade later, “it looks like
he was right.”
Level 2: Comprehend/ Identify
1. Summarize the article.
Level 3: Analyze
2. Do you detect any bias, or is the article objective? Use specific examples from the text to
prove your point.
3. What is the purpose of this article? How do you know?
Level 4: Evaluate/Connect
4. What is your opinion on this issue? Is it good or bad that Apple didn’t tell their customer s about this until
just now? Is Apple justified in tracking their customers, or have they sacrificed their integrity? How does this
issue relate to some of the novels we read throughout the year?