American Short Story Masterpieces 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. In the story, "The Bystander," who did Arty's father attack before being committed to a mental institution?

2. What is the name of Emily's daughter in the story "Talk of Heroes"?

3. How does Sean react when he gets stuck in the elevator with the young man?

4. Who is responsible for finding Mrs. Webster, Carlyle's future babysitter?

5. What reason does George give to others who ask why his wife continues to stay with him?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Earl's first impression of the town Rock Springs?

2. What happens when Sean is trapped in an elevator in the story "Midair"?

3. What prompts the narrator in "Sonny's Blues" to reach out to his incarcerated brother?

4. Why does Daniel aggressively attack Noel in the story "The Amish Farmer"?

5. How does Arty react in the story "The Bystander" when his father is committed to a mental institution?

6. How does Louise's husband react when Louise gains weight during her pregnancy?

7. What part about Arty's life made him feel like a "Bystander"?

8. What types of authors did Jenks and Carver seek to publish in this short story collection?

9. Why has Earl taken to the road in "Rock Springs" and who does he take with him?

10. How does Arty's father react when his son comes for a visit at the mental institution in the story "The Bystander"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In the story "Fever," Carlyle has three main women in his life who play a part in helping him heal from his "sickness." Describe the sickness that Carlyle suffers from in his story. Choose two of the important women in his life and describe their role in helping him heal. What is the same about their methods of care? What is different? Describe how Carlyle emerged from his sickness, and what he learned about his life and relationships while he was ill. Be sure to include examples from the text that you believe strengthen your arguments.

Essay Topic 2

The story "The Wedding" is all about loneliness. First, describe the loneliness of Sam, Elizabeth, and the child. What is the same about their loneliness? What is different? Describe the relationship between Elizabeth's loneliness and her passion for reading. How do these two seemingly unrelated things affect each other? Finally, describe how loneliness brought Sam and Elizabeth together in marriage. In the end, do you think the couple was settling, or were they truly in love? How can you tell? Be sure to include examples from the text to strengthen your arguments.

Essay Topic 3

In the story "The Misfits," Gay is a man who cannot commit to anything for a long period of time. Describe Gay's character and explain why he a fear of commitment. Choose one relationship in Gay's life and explain how his fear of commitment affected that relationship. Finally, describe the relationship between Gay and Perce. What brings these two men closer together? What threatens to tear them apart? Be sure to include examples from the text that you believe strengthen your arguments.

(see the answer keys)

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