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 would happen if Sacks were not found by nightfall?

2. What analogy does Sacks use to describe his left leg's failure during therapy?

3. Who has written about the "occasions of poetry" (pg 9)?

4. Why did Sacks have strong legs?

5. When Sacks began to write to Luria, where did Luria live?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Sacks describe the bull? How does this description show his change of heart from the time he read the warning sign?

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

3. What distinction does Freud make between types of paralyses? How did the distinction pave the way for a significantly narrow view of neurology?

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

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

6. How did Sacks become the music which he heard in his head? How might this have saved him?

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

8. 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?

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

10. How did Sacks move from the world of freedom into the world of the hospital? How might this have contributed to his thought that the operation on the following day would actually be an execution?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What two distinctions did Sacks make for his attitudes while he was in Limbo? How were these distinctions borne out throughout his recovery (though he didn't allude to them so obviously after his time in Limbo)?

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

What is the main point of A Leg to Stand On? In other words, what does Sacks most want his readers to learn? How does he illustrate or argue for this point throughout the book?

(see the answer keys)

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