Biloxi Blues 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. What does Donald do constantly?

2. What does Selridge suggest the soldiers should bet on?

3. How many young men are on stage at the beginning of Act 1?

4. What is wrong with Roy's mouth?

5. What did the men in the latrine do to Epstein's head?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Carney upset at what Eugene wrote?

2. Describe Arnold Epstein's eating habits.

3. What does Toomey tell the soldiers about their future service in the war?

4. How do the other soldiers react when Toomey obeys his punishment?

5. What prevented Eugene from seeing any action in the war?

6. How long is Selridge in with the prostitute?

7. What does Epstein threaten that he will do to Wykowski on the troopship?

8. What is the soldiers' new sergeant like?

9. What state is Toomey in during Act 2, Scene 7?

10. What does Epstein object to about Toomey's style?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The play BILOXI BLUES is about soldiers during wartime, but little is actually seen of the war. Discuss the role of war in the novel.

1) Why does the play show Eugene's experience before shipping overseas, and then end with his retelling of events during the war, but not show the war itself?

2) How real does the war seem to the soldiers in boot camp?

3) What affect does the existence of the war, which the soldiers will soon have to become a part of, have on their decisions and attitudes?

Essay Topic 2

One of Eugene's primary goals is to become a writer. Discuss this goal.

1) What qualities does a writer have? Does Eugene possess these qualities? How does Eugene's writing change over the course of the play?

2) Why does Eugene want to be a writer? Why is this an important goal?

3) What does it mean to be a writer? What does being a writer demand from Eugene?

Essay Topic 3

An "other" is someone who is different and becomes outcast. Discuss being different and the concept of the "other" in the play.

1) In what ways are each of the characters different and therefore outcast from the others? Which are outcasts in the culture of the army?

2) How do the characters react to the things that make other characters different? Do any of the characters relate their own status as "others" with ways in which others are also outcasts?

3) How does the idea of an outcast "other" relate to war? Who becomes the "other" during wartime, and how do the soldiers think and talk about this during the play?

(see the answer keys)

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