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. Who considers herself to be the family confessional?

2. What subject does Lisbeth's beau teach?

3. How do Monsieur Hulot and Monsieur Crevel become acquainted?

4. How long has Monsieur Crevel been a widower?

5. What does the narrator consider to be "the most reliable thermometer of wealth in Parisian households"?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does the Baroness summon Monsieur Crevel? Which of Monsieur Crevel's actions have affected the Baroness? Why has he acted this way?

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

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

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. 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?

6. Whom does Wenceslas see when he returns home? Whom does he say has purchased his bronze group and offered him work?

7. Where does the Baron go after he finds the opera to be closed? What does he learn when he arrives there?

8. What does Lisbeth advise Wenceslas to do after the visit from Monsieur Grasset and what reason does she give for this? What does she promise to do?

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

10. How do Monsieur Crevel and Monsieur Hulot know one another? How are they related? What occasioned their falling out?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What is the significance of social class in Cousin Bette? How does this theme affect the relationship between the characters and advance the plot of the novel? Use specific examples from the text to support your answer.

Essay Topic 2

How is literary allusion used in Cousin Bette? Choose two examples from the text. What is the significance of these allusions? What messages do they communicate and to what themes do they relate?

Essay Topic 3

A major theme in Cousin Bette is that of forgiveness. Choose three examples from the text and analyze the outcomes of these acts. What is the message the text communicates about forgiveness?

(see the answer keys)

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