Death and the King's Horsemen 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. Jane influences Pilkings through ____________.

2. How many deaths occur within the story?

3. Who do the Pilkings speak to for more insight to Amusa's report in Act 1, Scene 2?

4. Where is most of the play set?

5. What type of device plays the music in the Pilkings' home in Act 1, Scene 2?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Amusa fail in arresting Elesin?

2. What is the "real" theme of the play, as stated by Soyinka in the author's note?

3. What is the significance of the term, "my mother", in African culture?

4. Explain what happens when Elesin emerges from the bridal tent.

5. How does Elesin Oba represent the universe in the eyes of the Yoruban people?

6. Explain the scene of the "Not-I" dance.

7. What are Jane and Pilkings doing as Act 1, Scene 2 opens and the two are introduced? What are they wearing?

8. Who is Amusa and what is his role?

9. Where does Elesin choose to make his transition? Why does he choose this place?

10. What does Amusa's note say in the dance of Act 1, Scene 4? Why does Amusa write the note?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Olunde and Soyinka have many similarities. Compare Soyinka, the author, with Olunde and his character within the book.

Essay Topic 2

How does Elesin Oba rationalize marrying the young girl to the women of the Market? Why does Iyaloja specifically believe marriage is a bad idea for Elesin, considering the journey he must make?

Essay Topic 3

Fear plays a large part in the motivation of the actions of several people within the play. How does fear motivate the actions of characters within the play? Which characters are motivated by fear?

(see the answer keys)

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