A Year by the Sea: Thoughts of an Unfinished Woman Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Joan Anderson
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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. Why did Joan's old book club always end up canceling their December meetings?

2. Where did Joan and her husband meet?

3. In Chapter 6, Waves of Truth, why did Joan think women looked exhausted as the holidays approached?

4. Once Joan's husband left in Chapter 1, Ebb Tide, how did Joan react?

5. Approximately how many other runners showed up with Joan to participate in the New Year's Day race?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who was Joan Erikson and how did Joan meet her?

2. What kind of job did Joan get in Chapter 4, Riptide, and why didn't she ask her husband for financial help instead of getting a job?

3. In Chapter 4, Riptide, how did Joan relate the state of her marriage to a riptide?

4. In Chapter 9, Fogged In, how did Joan become estranged from her brother?

5. What incident told Joan that the other workers at the fish market had accepted her?

6. What was Joan's husband's childhood like, and how did his childhood experiences affect the couple's marriage?

7. What reflections did the seals give Joan on her body image?

8. How did Joshua Cahoon differ from Joan's husband?

9. In Chapter 7, Silent Seas, Silent Nights, why did Joan mentally compare her marriage to several boats which had gotten frozen in place in the harbor?

10. What was Joan's day with the seals like?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Compare and contrast Joan Erickson, Hazel, and Joan's daughters-in-laws. Cite examples from the text to support your arguments.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the influence of nature in Joan's life during her year at Cape Cod. What aspects of nature did Joan encounter, and how did they help her healing and growth? Cite examples from the text to support your conclusions.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the depiction of gender roles in "A Year by the Sea." What characteristics and roles were ascribed to women in the book? What characteristics and roles were ascribed to men in the book? Did the men in the fishing community of Cape Cod treat the women as equals, or did they try to dominate them? Did Joan's husband treat Joan as an equal prior to their year-long separation, or did he try to dominate her? Cite at least three examples from the text to support your conclusions.

(see the answer keys)

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