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. What is wrong with Biff whistling in the elevator?

2. What is it that Linda almost forgets to tell Willy?

3. What ultimatum does Linda serve to her sons?

4. How has Willy's salary rate changed?

5. What is the outcome of Willy's visit to Howard?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. What erratic behavior of Willy's indicates that he is disintegrating emotionally?

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

4. What reassuring news does Linda give Biff when he phones her?

5. In what way is the contrast between Willy's dreams and reality expressed in his conversation with Linda?

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

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

8. In what picturesque way does Linda reinforce for Biff that his father needs support and nurturing?

9. What is it that prevents Willy from accepting the offer of a job from Charley?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

"It comes with the territory" has passed into the language. What does this phrase mean and why is it so crucial to our understanding of Death of a Salesman?

Essay Topic 2

Comment on the staging of the "internal scenes" in Death of a Salesman. How effective do you think these are? How important are they in the creation of drama? Are they necessary to understanding the characters? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

"Death of a Salesman offers a pessimistic view of the citizen's place in the social world.'" Do you agree? Regardless of how you answer regarding Willy, what of his sons? Describe the likely futures of Biff and Happy.

(see the answer keys)

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