Darkness Visible Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Why did Styron's publisher have to reschedule a photo session?

2. What happens to Styron's speech as he becomes more depressed?

3. Which writer does Styron quote as saying he had "lost the right path"?

4. Though depression tends to recur, what advantage do sufferers of recurrence have?

5. How does his diary represent his mental state?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Styron's book and its subject becomes quite dark and depressing at times. Also, it is difficult because of the symbolism and the difficult language used. Yet it is considered a classic, worthy of being taught in a high school class. Why is this? What about this subject makes it relative to people today? What about the book makes it an excellent memoir? What comprises the beauty in the book?

Essay Topic 2

One of the characteristics of a good memoir is for the author to take one position in relevance to the topic. Does Styron effectively take one position in relation to depression? Give proof of your position from the book. What references from the book support his taking a certain stance, or did he fail to do that? What is his position (s) in reference to depression?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss Styron's opinions about the roles biology (genetics, brain chemicals, and influence of meds and alcohol) and environmental factors have in the development of depression. Use passages from the book to support your answers.

(see the answer keys)

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