Brothers and Keepers: A Memoir 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 John say Jamila is obsessed with?

2. What does John say his mother lost when Robby declined into crime?

3. What does John say he sees in himself by looking at the prisoners?

4. Who is Jamila?

5. Who is John?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does John characterize the freedom gained by escaping from a situation or place?

2. How does John characterize the significance of Robby's birthday?

3. How does John say he and his family act when they get to the penitentiary?

4. How does John describe his and his siblings' background?

5. How does John characterize the drive to the penitentiary?

6. What does John say the prisoners notice?

7. What happened after Robby's arrest?

8. How does John treat the prisoners?

9. Describe Robby's entrance into drugs and crime.

10. In what way is John on the run as much as Robby is?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What is the genre of Wideman's book about his brother? Analyze the text and make an argument. Is it a memoir? A piece of advocacy? Journalism? History? Literature? Novel? A biography? Is it dated by its material, or is it timeless?

Essay Topic 2

Compare and contrast John and Robby's methods of speaking out. What do they say, when they have a chance? What are they prevented from saying? What does this tell us about the options black men have, for speaking up?

Essay Topic 3

Assess the proposition that prisons are an inhumane form of retribution for crimes such as Robby's.

(see the answer keys)

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