The Book of Laughter and Forgetting 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. What does Husak desire?

2. Who is Banaka?

3. Where is the boat with the boy who rows?

4. How is the student when he returns to his Writer's Club?

5. What is Kristyna to the student?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Tamina losing herself and why does she think the notebooks will help her situation?

2. Briefly describe a few of the most salient points about Tamina.

3. How is Tamina's situation where Raphael takes her similar to her husband's situation just before he dies?

4. What does Tamina ask Bibi to get for her in Prague and why does Tamina make the request?

5. Discuss what graphomania is and how it is used in the context of this chapter.

6. What is the meaning of the word litost?

7. What does Kundera do at the opening to Part VI: The Angels?

8. What happens to Kundera's father in Part 6 and what do you think is the significance of Kundera writing about what happens to his father?

9. What is the relationship of litost to romantic love in general and specifically in relation to Kristyna and the student?

10. What is ironic about the student deceiving Kristyna and attending the Writer's Club meeting?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Part 3, "The Angels," Kundera is hired to write astrology columns for a political magazine after he is banned from working by the government. While on the job, he is asked to give the personal astrological reading of a Communist in secret. He gives him the "reading" and the editor of the magazine tells him the powerful man becomes a much nicer, softer man after reading it. Discuss the following:

1. How do you think Kundera's story about astrology fits in with the rest of this novel?

2. Why do you think an astrology reading changes a man? Do you think this is a true anecdote?

3. Do you think Kundera is suggesting that astrology has as much a reason for what happens in the political arena of Czechoslovakia as anything else? Explain.

Essay Topic 2

In Part 3, "The Angels," laughter is discussed and analyzed at great length. Discuss the following:

1. Compare and contrast the different types of laughter discussed in Part III.

2. Which types of laughter could be labeled "good" or "uplifting"? Explain.

3. Which types of laughter could be labeled "bad" or "harmful"? Explain fully.

Essay Topic 3

Kundera's book is not so much a book of actions, but one of thought. Discuss one of the following:

1. Discuss the theme of forgetting as it occurs in two of the parts other than Part 1 and 4. Use specific examples to support a thesis.

2. Compare and contrast the idea of forgetting in Part 1 compared to Part 4.

3. Argue one side or the other of this statement: Kundera believes forgetting can be a valuable tool for healing.

(see the answer keys)

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