Ada; or, Ardor: A Family Chronicle Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test 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?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Discuss siblings, cousins, and their relationships in the novel.

1) What are the relationships between Marina and Aqua? How are they similar to each other? How does Aqua serve as a substitute for Marina? How does this compare to the relationship between Demon and Dan?

2) Discuss the relationship between Lucette and Ada? How are they similar and different, and what does their relationship as sisters have to do with their similarities? How does Lucette serve as a substitute for Ada?

3) Discuss the relationship between Ada and Van as brother and sister. How does their relationship as siblings change their associations? What similarities does it create between them?

Essay Topic 2

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?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the structure of the novel.

1) What role does each of the five parts of the novel play? How does each represent a specific period in the relationship of Ada and Van, and how are those periods different from each other?

2) Why is the first book the longest? Why is the fourth book a single chapter?

3) In what ways is the structure chronological? How and why does it break out of chronological order?

(see the answer keys)

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