Curse of the Starving Class 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 breaks the front door?

2. What is in the paper bag Wesley's father is carrying?

3. In the first Act, what does Ella tell Taylor Emma has?

4. How many sets of animal twins does the family have?

5. What animal does Wesley bring into the kitchen?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Wesley do when he reenters in Act Three after cleaning up?

2. What is Emma doing at the beginning of Act Two?

3. Why does Weston say he goes off "for a little while"?

4. Why does Wesley tell Weston he has to run?

5. What is Emma's argument for swimming in Act One?

6. What does Wesley do when he comes in after taking the lamb outside?

7. Why does Weston not let Emma do his laundry?

8. Why does Ella tell Wesley he should not be cleaning up the debris?

9. Into what does Ellis want to turn the house?

10. Why is crime the perfect self-employment for Emma?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the meaning of the title, "Curse of the Starving Class". How is the title relevant to the story's plot? What predictions can the reader make previous to reading the play based on the title? What deeper meaning does the title assume? Use specific examples from the play in the response.

Essay Topic 2

In "Curse of the Starving Class", each main character is on a quest or searching for something. Choose one of the main characters (Weston, Ella, Emma or Wesley), and describe what that character is searching for. What steps does the character take to find what they are looking for? Is the character successful or not in fulfilling their quest or search? Use specific examples from the text in the response.

Essay Topic 3

Sam Shepard's play, "Curse of the Starving Class" emphasizes the family dynamics of the main characters. Describe the family dynamics between Weston, Ella, Emma and Wesley. How does each relate to the others? What problems does the family experience? What joys and accomplishments do the family acknowledge and celebrate? How does an outside person describe the family? Use specific examples from the text in the response.

(see the answer keys)

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