Barrel Fever: Stories and Essays Test | Final 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. Where does Marty park his motorcycle in "Jamboree"?

2. Why does Jocelyn repeatedly yell at Khe Sahn in "Season's Greetings..."?

3. Who does Vicki end up marrying in "Jamboree"?

4. Who did the narrator of "Jamboree" believe would want to "cash in" on his sister's success?

5. What does the author pretend he has won in "The Curly Kind"?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the author feel about adults who dress in costumes for their jobs in "Santaland Diaries"? How does he believe he will be different if he is hired as one of Santa's elves?

2. Who is Trudy Chase in "Barrel Fever"? How does the narrator react to a phone call from Trudy?

3. Describe Santa Santa in "Santaland Diaries".

4. Describe Kyle Dunbar in "Season's Greetings to Our Family and Friends".

5. What are the two reasons the narrator gives for boycotting Malison's reading in "After Malison"?

6. What does the narrator's mother give him before she dies in "Barrel Fever"? Why does she give him this gift?

7. What story does Sedaris tell the little boy Riley when he throws a temper tantrum in "Santaland Diaries"?

8. Why is Jocelyn Dunbar suspected of murdering Don and framing Khe Sahn in "Season's Greetings..."?

9. How does the narrator of "Barrel Fever" feel about the word "nice"? Why does he feel this way?

10. Describe the narrator's elf costume in "Santaland Diaries".

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The final four pieces in "Barrel Fever" are listed as "essays". In your essay,

1) describe the qualities that an essay typically has,

2) discuss how two of these pieces fit the genre of essay, and

3) discuss how two of these pieces present a unique take on the genre of essay.

Be sure to use evidence from the stories to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 2

Violence figures heavily into some of the stories in the collection. Choose two of the stories that include strong examples of violence and:

1) explain how violence is portrayed in the story,

2) describe the impact violence has in the story, and

3) explain what you think the author is trying to say about violence through this story.

Be sure to use specific examples from the stories to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 3

In many of the stories in "Barrel Fever", Sedaris satirizes popular culture. Select 2 of the stories in which the author uses satire and:

1) describe the ways in which satire is used in the stories,

2) compare and contrast the use of satire in each story, and

3) discuss the impact of satire on the reader's experience of the stories.

Be sure to use evidence from the stories to support your ideas.

(see the answer keys)

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