Before We Were Free Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. How many men in dark glasses are in the Volkswagons?

2. What does Anita learn about their new housekeeper?

3. What is Anita inclined to say about Oscar's comments about the country?

4. What does the teacher tell Anita to do?

5. What is significant about Anita's family?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Anita realize when she writes in her diary?

2. How does Chucha help Anita and what does Chucha tell her?

3. Why does Anita use a pencil in her journal?

4. How does Anita begin to see their leader in a different light?

5. What does Anita overhear her father say about the Washburns?

6. How does Mrs. Mancini's distrust of people turn out to be fortuitous?

7. What does Papi and the Washburns decide to do about Lucinda?

8. What does Papi explain to Anita about Carla when Anita gets home?

9. What do the children do after the American school is closed and how do they get to school?

10. What does Mami say about why the family is staying in the country?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

There are a number of interesting questions raised by "Before We Were Free."

1. What does the term "author agenda" mean?

2. Name one idea or concept you think may have been a part of the Alvarez's agenda. Analyze that idea as it appears throughout the book and discuss Alvarez's probable agenda concerning that idea.

3. Do you think writers who have an agenda for writing should point it out in a preface?

4. How often do you think fiction is written with a clear agenda in mind by the author?

5. Research the life of Julia Alvarez to see if her life may have influenced her writing and, if so, where and how?

Essay Topic 2

Most protagonists are a mixture of admirable traits and character flaws, and Anita is no exception.

1. Trace and analyze situations in which Anita demonstrates an instinct for handling problems that might be beyond the ability of a twelve-year-old girl. Give specific examples to illustrate your analysis.

2. Trace and analyze Anita's character flaws, and explain how they create a more complex and believable character. How do you think Anita's character flaws make some situations more difficult for her?

3. After analyzing Anita's strengths and weaknesses, decide if she is the "heroine" of the story. Is there anyone else who might be considered such? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

"Before We Were Free" belongs to the young-adult-novel genre. Discuss the following:

1. Define the literary term "genre" and give examples of three other genres in addition to the young-adult-novel genre.

2. Discuss two reasons that it might be useful to label a text by genre and two reasons that it might be disadvantageous to do so.

3. What do you think is the difference between a young-adult novel and a historical mystery novel ?

(see the answer keys)

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