Black Dog of Fate: A Memoir Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Peter Balakian
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. In what year did Balakian first discover a love for poetry while in English class?
(a) 1969.
(b) 1967.
(c) 1968.
(d) 1966.

2. What is berek?
(a) Kebabs.
(b) Cheese-filled filo triangles.
(c) A rice dish.
(d) A pistachio dessert.

3. What is the name of the torte made with shredded wheat?
(a) Titoomov.
(b) Nujuk.
(c) Paklava.
(d) Kadayif.

4. What kind of trees do the silkworms come from?
(a) Maples.
(b) Oaks.
(c) Willows.
(d) Mulberries.

5. What town did Balakian's grandmother mention when she was discussing the death march, as he lay in bed sick?
(a) Diarbekir.
(b) Aleppo.
(c) Der Zor.
(d) Constantinople.

Short Answer Questions

1. What junk food did Balakian reminisce about eating at the Dillstein's house?

2. What is lokma?

3. What does the phrase, "Mairig Asdvadzadzeen," mean?

4. What kind of car did the Aroosian women drive during their house-viewing expeditions in 1958?

5. Where did the Ottoman Turks originally come from?

Short Essay Questions

1. In what way was Balakian's attachment to the Jewish families in his first neighborhood ultimately superficial, and could it have been deeper?

2. How did Balakian's father's fear of germs, as well as other family member's obsession with health and safety, reflect their experiences during the genocide?

3. Why did Balakian's father insist his son leave the public schools and attend a private school?

4. How did Balakian's grandmother continue to affect him even after her death?

5. Why did Balakian and Auntie Anna argue about literature?

6. Why was Balakian so unnerved by his grandmother's constant doting on him at family gatherings?

7. How did Balakian's family's attachment to food reflect their ancestors' history?

8. Describe the Wall family, who were Balakian's neighbors in Tenafly.

9. Describe Balakian' s father.

10. How did Balakian's memorial poem for his grandmother reflect his Armenian past?

(see the answer keys)

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