Mid-Book Test - Hard
|Name: _____________________________||Period: ___________________________|
This quiz consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.
Short Answer Questions
1. Why does Ada tell stories at meals?
2. What is the "eremitic reality or collective dream" Van discusses in his dissertation called?
3. What does Dack run through the house with?
4. What gift does Dan give Ada for her birthday?
5. Who walks in on Ada and Van making love?
Short Essay Questions
1. What does Van give to Lucette in exchange for the name of the man who wants to marry her?
2. What metaphor does Van use for trying to understand time?
3. How does Van respond to an invitation to dine at the Captain's table?
4. Where and in what circumstances do Van and Ada first have sex?
5. In Marina's last days, why is Van planning a trip to America?
6. How does Van gain the post of Rattner Chair of Philosophy at University of Kingston?
7. What does Blanche look like as she is ready to leave?
8. What does Ada say lions do when they eat a person?
9. Describe the encounter between Blanche and Van.
10. What were the reviews of Van's first book like?
The novel is a memoir, narrated by Van with input from Ada, and written in the third person with occasional first-person interludes. Discuss point of view in the novel.
1) Why does Van write his memoir mainly in the third person? What does this say about Van's perception of himself through time and his memories?
2) At what points does Van interrupt the narrative in the first person? What do these first person sections add to the novel? Why are they there?
3) What does Ada add to the novel? Where is her voice present?
Discuss Van as a character.
1) What drives Van's attraction to Ada? Why does he carry his obsession with her through long absences?
2) What is Van's perception of women? How does he treat them, and what role do they play in his life?
3) What is Van's perception of himself? How is he a "vain Veen"?
4) Discuss Van's work as a writer and psychologist. Why does he choose this work? Why does he write the books he writes, and what contributes to his philosophy?
The central story of the novel is focused on the incestuous relationship between Ada and Van. Discuss incest in the novel.
1) What are Van and Ada's attitudes toward incest? The implication is that even as children, they know they are brother and sister. Do they hide this knowledge from themselves? Do they accept it?
2) Why do Ada and Van change their mind about living together when Demon finds out? Are their self-perceptions changed by Demon's admission of their relationship as siblings? Are their actions driven by Demon's open knowledge of the secret? What are the societal attitudes involved?
3) Why does Van tell Lucette he doesn't want another incestuous relationship with her? What is different about a relationship with Lucette, as opposed to any other unrelated woman?
This section contains 920 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)