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. According to Styron, what would be the only answer if depression was incurable?

2. According to Styron, what is a frequent theme in his novels?

3. How does Styron describe his recovery from depression?

4. What is so frustrating about depression for artists, musicians, and scientists?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the possible meaning Camus had when he talked about man's alienation for other men. What does this perspective mean, given his diagnosis of depression? Would he have seen the world the same way if he had not suffered depression? Do you think Styron agreed with him? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

A memoir is somewhat like a figurative photograph of the writer. It may be like an individual photograph or a group photograph. It offers sensory and symbolic details that paint a picture of the writer at that point in time. Discuss how Styron uses sensory detail and symbolic writing to paint his picture. Give examples from the book of how he does this, including language he may have used.

Essay Topic 3

The title of Styron's book, "Darkness Visible," comes from a quote from Milton's "Paradise Lost," describing Hell. Discuss why Styron might have chosen such a work to quote from. What about his condition might have led him to be attracted to such a work? What is the significance of choosing a quote describing hell to open his memoir on depression?

(see the answer keys)

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