Before We Were Free 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. Who is Pupo?

2. Where is Sam when Anita inquires?

3. What do Anita and Mami hear on the radio?

4. What is Anita beginning to have a hard time doing?

5. What does Anita write about Mrs. Mancini?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. Who are arrested in town and why?

3. What does Anita do when she discovers she has begun her first period?

4. What does Anita decide about men and why?

5. Who does Mami call for help, and what does Mr. Mancini tell Anita and Mami to do?

6. What does the teacher tell the students in school the day Lucinda is leaving and how does Anita react?

7. Who does Anita see out the bathroom window and what does she think?

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

9. What does Anita overhear her father and other men talking about concerning Trujillo, and what does Anita's mother say to the men?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following 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

Many novels, perhaps a majority of novels, end on a happy note. Discuss the following:

1. Why do you think many (most?) people want what they perceive as a happy or good ending to a novel? Explain your opinion. Do you? Why or why not?

2. What are three reasons to read fiction? Discuss each one in light of "Before We Were Free "and whether or not it fulfills all three, two, or one of the reasons you mention. Give examples as to why "Before We Were Free" is or is not successful in fulfilling the reasons you discuss.

3. Do you think reading solely for entertainment is as good a reason to read as any other? Why or why not? Can any work of fiction or non-fiction (no matter how poorly written) enlighten, teach, or stimulate thought? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

Often authors will write about "what they know," and sometimes knowing a little about the author makes the books more interesting. Discuss the following:

1. Research and give a brief biographical sketch of Julia Alvarez.

2. What in Alvarez's background may have helped her in writing "Before We Were Free"? What may have influenced the way she depicts various characters and scenes?

3. Do you think there is always some of the author's own life in his or her novels? Why or why not? Give examples.

(see the answer keys)

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