Angela's Ashes Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Frank McCourt
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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. Why does Mr. Downes return to Ireland?

2. Why does the family call the upstairs of their home Italy and the downstairs Ireland?

3. What does Grandma mean when she says that she has "God in me backyard?"

4. Why does Frank envy the children whose fathers are in England?

5. How does Mr. Benson have the boys practice for communion?

Short Essay Questions

1. Chapter 1 begins the pattern of Malachy losing his jobs. To what extent do you believe he is responsible for this pattern? Is he a victim of fate, or do his actions cause these negative consequences?

2. When Frank arrives home from the hospital in Chapter 8, he realizes that Malachy is unemployed again. Should Frank be surprised by this? Why or why not?

3. In Chapter 7, Frank gets and loses two jobs. Reflect on what this shows about the stability of his life.

4. Describe the effect Margaret's death has on the family in Chapter 1.

5. In Chapter 2, why do you think the officials at the St. Vincent de Paul Society are hesitant to help the McCourts?

6. In Chapter 9, why is the family shamed when no telegram arrives?

7. Describe the circumstances that lead the McCourt family back to Ireland in Chapter 1.

8. Grandpa McCourt sends the family money in Chapter 7, and Malachy spends it on alcohol. Why is this particular act more despicable than Malachy's others?

9. In Chapter 9, Mr. Downes tells Angela that Malachy is drinking away all of the money in London. Why do you think this is so shameful to the family?

10. There are several instances where Frank begins to show his rebellious nature in Chapter 5. Describe these instances.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The opening line of "Angela's Ashes" states "My father and mother should have stayed in New York where they met and married and where I was born." How does this foreshadow the rest of the book? How does this one line set the tone for the rest of the book?

Essay Topic 2

Consider the role alcohol plays in "Angela's Ashes." Alcohol serves as almost another character; it affects the family, society and well-being of everyone in the memoir. Discuss the role of alcohol, "pub-culture," and how alcohol is seen by both the McCourt family and society as a whole.

Essay Topic 3

Each one of the teachers Frank McCourt mentions in "Angela's Ashes" played a significant role in his education and in making him the person he later became. Trace McCourt's experiences with these teachers, and analyze the impact that each one had on his later life.

(see the answer keys)

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