Einstein's Dreams Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Alan Lightman
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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 the name of Einstein's wife?

2. What do travelers from the future envy?

3. What are the two times explained in the "24 April 1905" dream?

4. What is time compared to in the "16 April 1905" dream?

5. Where are Einstein and Besso walking in the "Interlude?"

Short Essay Questions

1. How can one identify people who have been transported back in time? (16 April 1905)

2. According to the first Interlude, why is Besso worried about Einstein?

3. What happens one minute before the end of the world?

4. What are the benefits of living in a world in which cause and effect are erratic?

5. At the end of the 26 April 1905 dream, what are the negative effects of living in the mountains?

6. Explain the meeting between the two couples in the 4 May 1905 dream.

7. Why does Besso think that Einstein is capable of anything?

8. Why do people in the 26 April 1905 dream choose to live in the mountains?

9. For the world described in the 11 May 1905 dream, describe the differences between the past and the future.

10. What effect does height have in the 26 April 1905 dream?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Given that this novel is written by someone other than Einstein, do you believe that the author was working out a theory of his own and used Einstein as a muse? What would support your standing? Cite specific examples from the text to support your responses.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the relationship between Einstein and Besso. Who do you think the relationship is more important to? Why? Who do you think the relationship is more taxing on? Why? Is the relationship relevant to the understanding of the novel? Cite specific examples from the text to support your responses.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the fact that the novel takes place over two hours of "real time." What is the importance of this fact? Given that the novel describes many different aspects of time, how does the novel support the multiple theories or does it actually play against the theme of time? Cite specific examples from the text to support your responses.

(see the answer keys)

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