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

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Final Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. How many copies of Van's book are sold in the first year?

2. What word does Greg seem to like to use?

3. Who chooses the girls at Villa Venus?

4. What is Van's purpose in writing his book about time?

5. What are the "three C's" Lucette says were talked about at Ada's house?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Nabokov is known for wordplay, and part of this is using significant names or manipulating names. Discuss the names of characters and places in the novel.

1) What meanings are put onto the characters' names by their association with other words? For example, what do Demon, Aqua, and Marina's names mean? What meanings are put on "Ada" and "Van"?

2) Discuss the name of Ardis Hall and what meanings and associations it has in the novel.

3) How do characters' names change in different contexts? What do these name changes signify?

Essay Topic 2

Van and Ada part bitterly after 1888 because of jealousy, and jealousy plays an important role in their relationship. Discuss jealousy in the novel.

1) Why is Van so jealous of Ada's other sexual relationships, when he is also sexually active without her? How is Ada jealous of Van?

2) How is Lucette jealous of Ada? How does her jealousy affect and define her relationships with Van and with Ada?

3) What other jealousies exist in the novel? How do the different characters respond to and think of jealousy?

Essay Topic 3

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?

(see the answer keys)

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