Emerson: The Mind on Fire: A Biography Test | Final Test - Hard

Robert D. Richardson
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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 does Richardson characterize "The Dial?"

2. With what point of Goethe's did Emerson conclude his lectures on great men?

3. How did Emerson see his personal history, according to Richardson?

4. What was Emerson's response to the publicity that arose from Andrews Norton's article?

5. How does Richardson characterize Emerson's feelings?

Short Essay Questions

1. What were Emerson's impressions of England when he traveled there in 1848?

2. What was the significance of Emerson's first daughter's name?

3. What was Emerson's relationship with abolition?

4. How does Richardson describe Emerson's home life in the 1850s?

5. Who was Jones Very?

6. How was Emerson's work changing as he reached his fortieth birthday, in Richardson's account?

7. In what ways did Emerson differ from his friends' opinions?

8. Who was Hafiz and what was his influence on Emerson?

9. Describe Emerson's son's death and its effect on him.

10. Why, according to Richardson, was Emerson's mood dark while he was preparing for his lecture tour in England?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write a character sketch of the author based on his style and content. What values does he hold dear? What are his hopes and fears? What kind of person do you think he is? Anchor your sketch in passages in the book.

Essay Topic 2

What is the role or importance of women in Emerson's life? What contribution did they make, and do you think that there is enough recognition of their contribution to his fame and reputation?

Essay Topic 3

What kind of writer was Ralph Waldo Emerson? Was he a poet, or a religious writer, or a writer of some other sort? Define your terms and make a case based on the text.

(see the answer keys)

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