A Leg to Stand On 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. What was the date when Sacks climbed the mountain?

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

3. What name did Sacks give his windowless hospital room?

4. Where did Sacks's accident occur?

5. Why did Sacks dedicate his book to Luria?

Short Essay Questions

1. When Sacks was in the hospital, why did he hesitate to write about his experience? What mindset change enabled him to write?

2. At the beginning of Chapter One, Sacks quotes Thomas Mann to say that the silent world receives and tolerates man but always remains menacing (pg 1). How does this relate to Sacks's experience in the world?

3. What is the most basic purpose of classical neurology? As can be inferred from the purpose of Sacks's book, how does classical neurology fall short?

4. 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?

5. When touching his left leg for the first time after surgery, what did Sacks feel? How does his description of this moment pave the way for the truth about the leg?

6. How does the quote at the beginning of Chapter Four compare to Sacks's own words which begin the chapter?

7. What timeline does Sacks establish for the development of neurology? What is still lacking from this branch of science?

8. How does Sacks think of his injury and recovery? Is this what you might have expected?

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

10. On page 167, how is the account of this man's body-agnosia similar to Sacks'? How is it different?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

"We have art, in order that we may not perish from the truth" (Nietzsche, Chapter Three, pg 89). Why did Sacks believe this? How did he incorporate this idea into his recovery?

Essay Topic 2

As Sacks was being pressured to begin walking, what miracle occurred? How was this miracle the same thing he had been working toward since his accident?

Essay Topic 3

Describe the world of the convalescent home. How did Sacks change and grow stronger here? What did he learn about himself? How did the convalescent home allow him to approach the world again?

(see the answer keys)

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