A Personal Matter 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 does the person in #52 tell Bird?

2. Bird encounters a man whose baby has no ________________.

3. What request does Bird's colleague make of him?

4. Which of the following does Bird NOT think about on this day?

5. From what is Bird suffering this morning?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is unusual about the doctor who speaks to Bird about the baby?

2. What does the glass-eyed doctor tell Bird they will know more about the baby's condition?

3. Why did the author give names to only a few of the characters?

4. How is Bird's encounter with the gang a boost to his flailing ego?

5. What seems to exaggerate Bird's feelings of inadequacy at the arcade?

6. Who are the people who Bird encounters when he gets to the maternity hospital?

7. What does Bird's father-in-law give to Bird during the visit and why is this an unlikely offering given Bird's troubles with addiction?

8. What does Bird observe when he visits his father-in-law at the university?

9. How does Bird's thoughts about his child as a war hero show what Bird really feels about the journey ahead for the child and himself?

10. What do the giggling doctor and the one-eyed doctor symbolize in the story?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Explain the role of women in 1960s Japan when the women in the novel are living their lives. What precedents do they feel compelled to follow? What restrictions do they have? What freedoms did they have that 21st century women do not have?

Essay Topic 2

The frustration of unfulfilled affection touches several characters in the story. Name at least two characters who experience unfulfilled love and the situations that occur as a result.

Essay Topic 3

The author uses more than one iteration on the theme of disappointment. Identify at least two characters who either embody or experience disappointment then cite an example to support your answers.

(see the answer keys)

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