Death of a Salesman 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. How much does Linda have to pay for repair of the hot water system?

2. How does Willy pay for Biff's radio correspondence course?

3. When Linda says "You notice?", what is she referring to?

4. Where was Ben living when he died?

5. What is Willy Loman carrying as he enters the stage?

Short Essay Questions

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

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

3. Comment about Willy's assertion that "I never in my life told him anything but decent things."

4. How does Biff respond to Happy's question about his plans for the future?

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

6. Comment on Willy's "Dave Singleman" speech.

7. In the first few minutes of the play, what indications are there that Willy has an affinity with the artistic and creative?

8. What is Happy's attitude to the news that his father is contemplating suicide?

9. 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?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

"Willy Loman's tragedy is that he is the outsider who yearns to be an insider." Account for Willy's ultimate lack of success as a salesman.

Essay Topic 2

"Willy Loman's problem is not that he had the wrong dream, but that the dream was not large enough." To what extent do you agree with this statement?

Essay Topic 3

"The ancient Greeks had a motto that said, 'Know yourself.' Death of a Salesman is a play about people who never understand themselves." To what extent do you agree with this statement? In your answer, refer both to major and minor characters in the play.

(see the answer keys)

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