A Mencken Chrestomathy 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. Mencken compares Theodore Roosevelt's political ideas to which other politician's?
(a) The United State's William Jennings Bryan.
(b) Germany's Kaiser.
(c) A Japanese feudal lord.
(d) England's Queen.

2. How did morality come to be, according to Mencken?
(a) Morality evolved from social practices required to survive.
(b) Morality evolved from the innate sense of right and wrong in children.
(c) Morality is a creation of the Christian church.
(d) Morality is the product of the woman's insidious influence over man.

3. What was the goal of early democratists?
(a) The overthrow of the wealthy.
(b) Definitions of concepts like truth and beauty.
(c) Concrete material gains.
(d) Philosophical frameworks to support democracy.

4. How has Mencken organized his book?
(a) By length.
(b) By author.
(c) By date.
(d) By subject.

5. What is the "altruist" motivated by?
(a) Being uncomfortable with unhappy people around him or her.
(b) A divine inspiration.
(c) Out and out greed.
(d) A selfish sense of self-worth.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is Mencken's belief about crime?

2. What is the chief problem with political theorists?

3. What does Mencken NOT believe about the possibility for morality to change over time?

4. How does Mencken describe President Coolidge?

5. What is Mencken's hope for democracy?

Short Essay Questions

1. Per Chapter 2, describe Mencken's summation of the following types of people: the romantic, the believer, the metaphysician, and the altruist.

2. Summarize Mencken's appraisal of William Jennings Bryan. How is Mencken's opinion related to the Scopes Monkey Trial?

3. What does Mencken believe about the nature of man and God? What is the consequence for believing in God? What about the soul?

4. What is Mencken's view of monogamy/marriage?

5. What does Mencken see as a popular misconception about death? What is his opinion of suicide?

6. Describe Mencken's opinion of George Washington. Why does Mencken admire him? Why doesn't Mencken believe Washington would do well in a contemporary political climate?

7. What is democracy's fundamental flaw? What aspect of human nature motivates democracy?

8. What is Mencken's opinion of the contemporary American South? What are its features? What rules the South?

9. What is Mencken's opinion of government? What is the role of government? Is one system of government preferable to another?

10. What does Mencken feel about the relationship between science and religion?

(see the answer keys)

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