Clarissa 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 Miss Howe learn is the truth about Lovelace and Rosebud?

2. Why doesn't Clarissa read the letter from Miss Howe that tells her that Widow Sinclair keeps a house of prostitution as soon as the letter arrives?

3. When the Harlowes learn that Clarissa has run off with Lovelace, which family member is actually sad for Clarissa?

4. Which of Lovelace's friends is pleased to learn of Clarissa's escape?

5. Where does Lovelace offer to take Clarissa to get her away from her family?

Short Essay Questions

1. In letters 22-30, Clarissa is given three suggestions for getting away from her family. Lovelace offers to take her away twice, and Miss Howe tells her that she should move into her grandfather's estate, which is legally hers. Do you think Clarissa should have taken one of these choices? Why or why not, and if so, which one?

2. Do you think it's right for Miss Howe to wear mourning clothes, even though Clarissa told her not to? Why or why not?

3. In terms of symbolism, compare the bloody nose Clarissa gets while trying to escape from Widow Sinclair's house with the earlier injury to her hand when her brother tried to make her hold Mr. Solmes's hand.

4. Do you think Clarissa wants to marry Lovelace? Why or why not?

5. Describe Mr. Lovelace's character as it has been revealed in Letters 1-10.

6. How does Clarissa's will continue to develop her character?

7. Do you think that Lovelace's family is doing the right thing by encouraging him to marry Clarissa? Why or why not?

8. Is Miss Howe a good friend to Clarissa? Why or why not?

9. When Lovelace says he loves and hates Clarissa simultaneously, and can you see his point of view? Why or why not?

10. Do you believe that Lovelace is really repentant when he tells Mr. Hickman and Miss Howe that he is, at Colonel Ambrose's ball?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Although the form of an epistolary novel (a novel written in letters) is fairly unusual today, it was one of the most common ways for early novels to be written. Discuss the use of the epistolary form in "Clarissa." Discuss (a) the way letters are used to develop characterization, (b) the way epistolary form allows the author to create suspense, and (c) the way epistolary form allows readers to relate to characters.

Essay Topic 2

There are many examples of people having a hard time telling whether a person or object in front of them is what it appears to be. What do you think Richardson's message about deception is? Support your answer with three examples from the novel.

Essay Topic 3

The plot of "Clarissa" is very repetitive. As we have discussed, this repetition should be considered as a conscious strategy on the part of Richardson. Discuss the effect of repetition in the novel, being sure to address (1) Clarissa's repeated efforts to escape, both from Harlowe Place and from Lovelace, (2) Lovelace's repeated changes of heart about how to behave, and (3) the repeated efforts by Mrs. Howe to stop the letters exchanged between Miss Howe and Clarissa.

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