Doubt Test | Final Test - Hard

John Patrick Shanley
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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. Who was the woman in Father Flynn's sermon on gossip gossiping about?

2. Where does Sister Aloysius say Father Flynn went after leaving St. Nicholas?

3. What does Sister James tell Sister Aloysius she can't believe in Scene 9?

4. What does Sister Aloysius say Father Flynn will do until he is stopped?

5. What did Father O'Rourke say the gossipy woman had played fast and loose with?

Short Essay Questions

1. What reason does Father Flynn give Sister James for his not wanting to defend himself against Sister Aloysius' accusations?

2. In Scene 7, why does Father Flynn say that the truth makes for a poor sermon?

3. In the second part of Scene 8, what reason does Father Flynn suggest for Donald's odd behavior?

4. In Scene 9, what does Sister James tell Sister Aloysius she thinks of Father Flynn?

5. What does Father Flynn say is wrong about Sister Aloysius contacting his prior parish?

6. What is strange about Father O'Rourke's reaction to the gossipy woman's confession in Father Flynn's sermon?

7. What causes the woman in Father Flynn's sermon to feel guilty about gossiping?

8. How is the sermon Father Flynn preaches in Scene 6 symbolic?

9. In Scene 8, why does Mrs. Muller think she may have come to Sister Aloysius' office on the wrong day?

10. What does Sister Aloysius believe about Father Flynn's resignation from St. Nicholas?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There are so many ways in which doubt is raised throughout the course of the play. In Scene 5, we see a confrontation between Father Flynn and Sister Aloysius, and by the end the audience is left wondering if the battle is more personal than professional. What is your opinion on the confrontation? Is Sister Aloysius simply out to get Father Flynn because of personal differences, or is she truly concerned about his professional role with the students and their well-being? Provide examples to support your opinion.

Essay Topic 2

Parables are used in a number of ways throughout the play. We see them in the sermons Father Flynn delivers and in the play itself. Describe what a parable is, identify at least two parables and the lessons they teach that were given in sermons during the play, and discuss how the play itself fits the model of a parable. What lesson is the play intended to teach?

Essay Topic 3

Doubt: A Parable contains several instances of symbolism, such as Father Flynn's fingernails, the crows harassing Father Flynn, the pruning of the rosebush, etc. Choose two symbols from the play. Discuss what each of them represents and provide evidence from the play.

(see the answer keys)

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