A Woman Alone: Autobiographical Writings 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. According to Bessie, what had the blacks in Cape Town not made use of?

2. In 1975, Botswana had few what?

3. In Serowe, what grazes the earth to a shred?

4. What did the Durban Magistrate Court tell Bessie?

5. In "Village people," Bessie states that African peace is what?

Short Essay Questions

1. In 1966, what changes were made regarding refugees in Botswana?

2. How did Bessie react when she was forbidden to visit her adoptive family on school holidays?

3. How was African Independence celebrated in Botswana?

4. Why did Bessie keep all the notes that the American woman gave her?

5. What lasting effect did the treatment by the missionaries have on Bessie?

6. What facts about her parentage were brutally told to Bessie by the magistrate and the missionary?

7. How does Bessie describe Botswana in 1964?

8. In "The Old Woman," what is Bessie referring to when she says "Gods walk around Africa barefoot with nothing"?

9. What does Bessie say about refugees and friendship in "Letter from South Africa"?

10. What more compassionate details concerning her mother did Bessie learn over time?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Bessie thinks that friendship is very important in South Africa. What kind of country is South Africa, according to her? What do you find yourself doing if you have friends? What are you left alone to face if your friends flee the country? What do friends allow you to do that Bessie feels is essential to not becoming passive? Describe the good friend that Bessie had in South Africa and what effect his fleeing the country had on her.

Essay Topic 2

When Bessie spent four months in Iowa researching a book, she was surprised to discover that America was not as she had imagined. How did she compare America to the villages of early Europe? Was it easy for her to adapt to life there? Was she able to develop her "all-important" routine there? What did it consist of? What were her thoughts on the university library? What was she surprised and excited to find there? Do you think that Bessie had pre-conceived notions about America? Do you think that her stay in Iowa gave her a broader, more accurate picture of America? How do you think she would have described it and the people after her trip?

Essay Topic 3

Bessie describes the lonely life of South African refugees as she experienced. Do you that the refugees would say that it's a small price to pay for freedom? What was Botswana's reaction to refugees after independence? How did this reflect their view of refugees? Do you think that refugees are ever truly "free" of the country that they have fled? Are they always associated with it in the new country? Is this true today of America and refugees from the Muslim countries? What are the stereotypes of these refugees? Do you think that refugees should be forced to assimilate totally into their adoptive country, even forsaking previous culture, language, and religion?

(see the answer keys)

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