Death of a Salesman Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. In what way does Willy contradict himself in this opening scene?
(a) He first asks Linda for a sandwich, then says he'll just drink some milk.
(b) He boasts about his sales, then says he's a hopeless salesman.
(c) Willy first describes Biff as "a lazy bum," then a few seconds later says "Biff--he's not lazy."
(d) He first says that Biff is not lazy, then calls him "a lazy bum."

2. What excuse does Charley give Willy for his visit?
(a) He hears some noise so he thinks he would come in for a chat.
(b) He wants to play cards.
(c) He remembers to tell Willy about an important job opportunity.
(d) He hears some noise and thinks something has happened.

3. What does Willy say about Biff's knowledge of sporting goods?
(a) That he knows sporting goods better than Adidas.
(b) That he has tried every brand, but Spalding is best.
(c) That he knows a good deal about the way basketballs are packed in cartons.
(d) That he knows sporting goods better than Spalding.

4. How did Ben make his fortune?
(a) In the fur trade
(b) In Alaskan exploration
(c) In oil
(d) In diamond mines

5. What offer of Charley's does Willy refuse?
(a) Fifty dollars per week for life
(b) A job where he will not have to go out on the road
(c) A supervisory job in Boston
(d) To intercede with Howard to give Willy his job back

Short Answer Questions

1. At what time does Happy give Linda some money?

2. What metaphor about Willy does Linda use in her phone conversation with Biff?

3. Why didn't Biff attend the university?

4. What is Happy's reaction to the news that his father has been attempting suicide?

5. For what reason does Willy think the builder should have been arrested?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the significance of the way the Loman house is presented when the play begins?

2. In what way is Linda realistic about life?

3. What is revealed about teenage Biff's popularity with girls?

4. How do the Lomans react to Bernard's news that Biff must study for his coming exams?

5. What is revealed about Willy during his hallucinatory return to the past?

6. Explain the significance of Ben's words, "I have many enterprises, William, and I have never kept books."

7. Comment on the "gay and bright" music that is heard at the beginning of Act 2.

8. What does Biff suggest he and Happy do to change their lives?

9. As this scene (inside Willy's head) continues, what false idea does Willy peddle to his sons?

10. In what sense is Willy ironic when he comments that it is obscene for Biff not to have found himself by the age of thirty-four?

(see the answer keys)

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