The Crying of Lot 49 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. When Oedipa calls Emory Bortz, what does his wife Grace tell her Bortz is doing at the moment?

2. When Oedipa visits Genghis Cohen for the first time, what does he give her to drink?

3. What happens to Oedipa after she knocks on the door of Dr. Hilarius's office in Chapter 5?

4. Stanley Koteks tells Oedipa ________________ is a "symptom of the gutlessness of the whole society."

5. Oedipa's hotel room in the Berkeley hills contains a reproduction of whose painting?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is meant by Oedipa seeing Genghis Cohen, the philatelist, framed in a long succession of doorways?

2. At the end of Chapter 4, Genghis Cohen explains to Oedipa that the dandelion wine is clear now, but becomes cloudy in the spring when the dandelions begin to bloom, as if the dandelions in the wine remembered. What does Oedipa muse about this?

3. As Oedipa sits in rush hour traffic on the Bay Bridge, what does she determine she knows about Tristero?

4. What are the four alternatives Oedipa comes up with to explain her discoveries concerning the Tristero?

5. What is the paradox that Oedipa discovers concerning the Trystero couplet from Driblette's play?

6. What connection does Oedipa make between the old German stamp with Thurn and Taxis printed on it which has a post horn, resembling the WASTE symbol, in each corner and the scene from The Courier's Tragedy?

7. What is Pynchon ridiculing through all of Oedipa's in-depth research into the Trystero?

8. When Oedipa and Metzger go back to The Scope in Chapter 4, Mike Fallopian explains that there exists what kind of underground group?

9. The overall crisis Oedipa faces by the end of the novel could be summed up how?

10. Describe the Nefastis Machine as it was explained by Stanley Koteks.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The possible crime related to Inverarity's estate, the use of GI bones, is coupled to a Jacobean play about crimes also set in Italy, The Courier's Tragedy. Discuss how the themes of the novel are echoed in the play, as well as referencing the literary significance of Pynchon's use of a play-within-a-play.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the overall theme of the breakdown of communication on the societal level. How was it symbolized and explored throughout the novel? Compare this to how communication breaks down on a personal level for Oedipa.

Essay Topic 3

Give a definition of allegory and then discuss the allegorical aspects of the setting and characters of The Crying of Lot 49.

(see the answer keys)

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