Cousin Bette: Part One of Poor Relations 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. How does Lisbeth know the Marneffes?

2. According to the narrator, what is the fundamental feature of Lisbeth's character?

3. To what animal does Monsieur Crevel compare Mademoiselle Hortense in his conversation with the Baroness?

4. Who arranges for Wenceslas to be released from prison?

5. What year does the novel take place?

Short Essay Questions

1. What plan do Lisbeth and Hortense agree upon to help out Lisbeth's admirer? Who accompanies Hortense on this mission? Whom does her escort take notice of during this venture?

2. What information about Wenceslas' professional life does Valerie give to Lisbeth? What information about Wenceslas' personal life does she give Lisbeth? How does Lisbeth react to this news?

3. What solution does Monsieur Crevel propose to the Baroness for the problem of Hortense's dowry? What other options does he tell her she has available to her?

4. With whom does Lisbeth discuss the Baron's fascination with Valerie Marneffe? According to Lisbeth, what has Baron Hulot done to win her favor?

5. Describe Lisbeth. How old is she? How does she dress? How does this affect her social standing in comparison to her cousin, the Baroness?

6. Whom does Hortense decide to marry? What is the relationship between Hortense's intended and Lisbeth? Why does Baron Hulot tell her that Cousin Bette will not be an obstacle to Hortense's intended marriage?

7. What does Lisbeth tell Hortense and Adeline has happened to Wenceslas? How does Hortense react? How is Bette's lie discovered?

8. How does Lisbeth meet Wenceslas in the first place? What is the relationship between them after this first meeting?

9. After Wenceslas sells his bronze group, who comes to visit Lisbeth at her flat? What is the purpose of this visit?

10. Who is Valerie Marneffe's father? Why does she inherit nothing upon his death?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The theme of deception is highlighted throughout the novel Cousin Bette. Choose three examples of deception from the novel and analyze the events and characters to which they relate. What message about deception and truth is conveyed in the novel?

Essay Topic 2

What elements of Cousin Bette characterize this work as a Realist novel? How does this work exemplify literary realism? Give two specific examples from the text.

Essay Topic 3

How is irony manifested in Cousin Bette? Choose two examples of irony from the text and explain their classification and significance. How does the use of irony affect the tone of the novel?

(see the answer keys)

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