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. Who does Bessie think the Afrikaner race will one day emulate?

2. In "The old woman," what is Bessie offered as thanks for feeding the woman?

3. In 1965, what did Bessie write that the people of South Africa need to find in order to live together?

4. According to Bessie, what do African people push aside?

5. Why does Bessie believe that the artist Gladys Mgudlandlu is so successful?

Short Essay Questions

1. How was African Independence celebrated in Botswana?

2. In "Village People," how does Bessie describe the black African people?

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

4. How does Bessie describe Botswana in 1964?

5. In "Village People," how does Bessie describe poverty in Africa?

6. Why is there no rage and oppression in Botswana?

7. In "The Woman From America," what was the biggest threat that this woman and her husband posed to the village?

8. Why is Bessie so drawn to the American woman in "Woman from America"?

9. In "A Gentle People," what are Bessie's feelings regarding the black people of Cape Town?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

At the independence celebration in Botswana a student relays a story to the group. He says that when he shouted to burn the British flag, he was told that he was embarrassing everyone, especially the white people present. Why would anyone in Botswana care what the white people thought? Is Botswana held to a different standard because it's never been occupied? Do you think that some people think that they should appreciate the treatment that they've been given by the British? Do you agree? Do you think that the student's frustration stems from a perceived lack of understanding from the Botswana villagers of his passion for liberation? Does he look at blacks as one unified group while they are still looking at the situation from a Botswana point of view only?

Essay Topic 2

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?

Essay Topic 3

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.

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