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 is the title of Chapter One?

2. How long did Sacks think about his injury before he began writing about it?

3. Where did Sacks's accident occur?

4. How old was Sacks when he discovered the beauty of the world through the Pythagorean theorem?

5. What did Sacks feel as he was being admitted to the hospital?

Short Essay Questions

1. A large portion of the horror Sacks felt in Limbo was the silence. What other time has Sacks experienced such deep silence? How does this connection contribute to Limbo?

2. Leontev and Zaporozhet's book dealt with two hundred soldiers who suffered hand injuries. What was Sacks's reaction to the book? How did it help his healing process?

3. What is the literary effect of Sacks's description of his injury? Why do you think the injury is not detailed later?

4. During the late afternoon, what silence did Sacks experience? Why was this terrifying?

5. How does Sacks describe his arrival at the convalescent home? What particular words contribute to the picture he draws?

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

7. The night before his cast was taken off, Sacks repeatedly dreamed a nightmare. What was this nightmare? How did it reveal the conflict in his mind?

8. 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.

9. When Sacks's right arm and shoulder were immobilized, what happened? What did this tell him about a person's body image?

10. Patients in the hospital are treated with fear and sometimes horror by the healthy people who visit them. Using Sacks's thoughts, what might be the reason for this?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What aspect of nature had Sacks forgotten about while he lay in his hospital bed? How does this compare to his previous lifestyle: hiking, swimming, etc?

Essay Topic 2

"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 3

What role does sight play in Sacks's story? When is his sight best and worst? What affects his sight? How do his eyes serve as symbols of his leg's injury and recovery?

(see the answer keys)

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