A Leg to Stand On Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What would make the state of limbo tolerable?
(a) The knowledge of an end to this state.
(b) The ability to communicate with others.
(c) The concern of a fellow person in limbo.
(d) The ability to examine one's own thoughts.

2. What did Sacks feel as he was being admitted to the hospital?
(a) That he was finally reaching a place of hope.
(b) That he was approaching the gallows.
(c) That he was losing his humanity and individuality.
(d) That he was reaching the purity of non-being.

3. How did Sacks descend the mountain?
(a) By crawling.
(b) By "rowing" with his arms.
(c) By rolling and sliding.
(d) By hobbling on his right leg.

4. What time did Sacks hope to reach the mountain's summit?
(a) Noon.
(b) Two o'clock PM.
(c) Nine o'clock AM.
(d) Eleven o'clock AM.

5. When was Studies in Neurology published?
(a) 1940.
(b) 1920.
(c) 1930.
(d) 1910.

Short Answer Questions

1. Why did Sacks dedicate his book to Luria?

2. How long did it take Sacks to reach the final understanding of his various thoughts?

3. How long had Sacks been traveling when he came to the swollen stream?

4. What other word is connoted by the word "hell"?

5. What did Sacks find astonishing about his wound?

Short Essay Questions

1. While in the hospital, Sacks felt morally and physically prostrate before the doctor. How do you think this happened?

2. What advice did Sacks's maiden aunt give him? How does this advice come across on the printed page?

3. To whom did Sacks dedicate the book A Leg to Stand On? Why might he have chosen this person?

4. What paradoxical command did Sacks find while he was in Limbo? How do you think this contrasted with his previous way of living?

5. As Sacks began to regain freedom and move around the hospital, he frequently mentioned natural elements: the birds, sun, and wind. Given what you know of his personality, why are these things important?

6. Through what physical senses does Sacks reenter the world of men?

7. Who visited Sacks the evening after his operation? Why does he not mention these people again?

8. How was Miss Preston, the physiotherapist, more understanding than the surgeon had been? How did her understanding still fall short of the problem?

9. At his arrival to the Odda hospital, what was Sacks's experience with Nurse Solveig? How did this exemplify the prostration he began to feel in the hospital?

10. During his first night out of the hospital, Sacks wept in the doorway of the convalescent home. Briefly summarize his experiences so far to explain the tears.

(see the answer keys)

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