American Pastoral 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. Whom does Jerry not say Swede had to live with that caused pressure on him when talking to Nathan at the class reunion?

2. What is the narrator's profession?

3. What does Swede explain everything about to Rita when they first meet?

4. Whom does Merry ask Swede to kiss her like when they are returning from a seaside cottage in Chapter 3?

5. What is the name of the black worker at Swede's factory that stays with him during the riots?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the narrator say Swede's grandfather became a glove manufacturer?

2. How are Merry's physical attributes described as she grows up?

3. How is Jerry described at the beginning of Chapter 3?

4. What happens when Merry asks Swede if he would kiss her as he did her mother when she was a young child?

5. How is Rita's first visit to the glove factory described?

6. How is Merry's bombing in her hometown at the end of Chapter 3 described?

7. What does one doctor say about Merry's stuttering in regard to her perfectionist family?

8. What does Swede remember about when Merry watched monks on TV?

9. Swede reads about bombs over five years after Rita's visit that remind him of Merry. How are they described?

10. How does the narrator describe the lack of a generation gap in his neighborhood?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the irony of the outcome of Swede's life. What can be responsible for the obstacles present in Swede's life to explain for the tragedy surrounding his home life?

Essay Topic 2

Early in the story it becomes clear that the author has made use of a narrator to tell this story.

Part 1) What purpose might the author have for choosing to use a narrator to tell the story of Swede?

Part 2) What is that reader able to learn about the book's characters that they would not have because of the narrator?

Part 3) What clues are given to suggest that the author has used his own persona as the narrator of the story?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the portrayal of the Jewish neighborhood in the book. What importance did this culture have in Nathan and Swede's upbringing and future?

(see the answer keys)

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