Examination Day by Henry Slesar
Examination Day by Henry Slesar

Examination Day by Henry Slesar

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  • Pages: 2 (692 words)
  • Published: October 30, 2017
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The story is about a typical family living in a typical house living a typical life. In the Jordan’s there is Mr. Jordan, Mrs. Jordan and their son Dickie Jordan. It is Dickie’s 12th birthday and he has huge expectations for his day of celebration but when he comes to the breakfast table there is an awkwardness he does not understand.

Tensions are mounting from the very start of the story; it gets us asking questions even in the first sentence. “The Jordan’s never spoke of the exam…” this entices the reader to read on.

Dickie is to have a test that all children have shortly after their 12th birthday. Having heard nothing about this exam, Dickie is very interested yet concerned when his mother shows signs of upset. What could the exam be for? Why is he getting it? Why’s his mother so distressed?

The day comes for the exam and Mr. Jordan takes Dickie to the waiting room. Dickie sees “a boy leave his fathers side reluctantly and walk slowly towards the door.” This is a great line that leads both the reader and Dickie into suspense. We slowly try to figure out what he’ll have to do in the exam and what will happen to him.

The room, or so I imagine it to be, is very sterile and modern. He is sat in a chair with a microphone and a machine in front of him. Even more suspense is given to the reader when we only get the first question, of what seams to be a regular test. The story then goes back to the hou

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se where Mr. and Mrs. Jordan are waiting by the phone.

I think that the ending of this short story is very well written and cleverly thought out. It is not a regular school test. Yes, it is an exam testing the standard of your learning rate, but you are not hoping to do well but to do badly. It is a totally unexpected twist. With the last words said by the official being “You may specify by telephone….. Whether you wish for the body interred by the government or would you prefer a private burial place? The fee for government burial is ten dollars.”

This suddenly makes the government seem very cold hearted and gets you thinking about the reasoning of it all. IT seams that the government are the minority ruling over the majority and they like it this way. They want there to be segregation in which they are the superior.

lot of things are hidden in the story. Before the exam Dickie asks his father simple questions like “what makes it green? The grass?” and “how far away is the sun” Mr Jordan then replies with incorrect answers. At first, before you read the ending, the answers seam to be there just to make Dickie quiet, but slowly we realise that Mr. Jordan genuinely doesn’t know the answers. The whole society is stupid, it has to be or they would have been “exterminated”.

The reason I enjoyed reading “Examination day” is because I like the way that some of the story isn’t as obvious a

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it should be. I think that the more you read this story the more you will get out of it. In a way, this story is what you make of it. To me it is about government taking away some of the most important human rights, equality and freedom of speech.

The Government are keeping the population in order by killing, murdering the people they feel threatened by. Could our future be like this? Are we heading in that direction? I really do hope not, but this story really does make you think about these issues.

As a whole, I really enjoyed this story. IT made me think about the world that we live in today and where it is headed. It is a great story with a good structure of an excellent start, middle and end. This story has good techniques creating suspense for the reader and a need to read on. A story thoroughly enjoyed.

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