The Emperor Jones 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 does Jones do when he appears at the beginning of the third forest scene?

2. Who are the figures Emperor Jones sees working in this third forest scene?

3. Who gestures to Emperor Jones to join the figures in the apparition?

4. What is Jeff doing when Emperor Jones sees him?

5. How has Emperor Jones changed in the first four scenes?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Emperor Jones do when he understands what the figure in the sixth forest scene's apparition wants from him?

2. How does Jones break the spell of the apparition in the fifth forest scene?

3. What are two explanations for the identity of the chain gang?

4. Describe Emperor Jones' state of mind at the beginning of the third forest scene.

5. Before he sees Jeff, Emperor Jones surveys himself and assesses his plight. How does he feel about his situation?

6. Describe the apparition Emperor Jones sees in the sixth forest scene.

7. How are the formless fears manifested on stage?

8. What does Emperor Jones do when he sees Jeff?

9. Which characters talk about Jones in the final scene? What do they say?

10. What irony does Smithers point out in the final scene?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Emperor Jones strips off his clothing as the play goes on. Describe three instances where clothing is important in the play and describe the symbolic significance of clothing in the play.

Essay Topic 2

The witch doctor dances in front of Emperor Jones and he makes it clear that Jones is a force of evil and he should be sacrificed. How is evil defined in the play? Are there different definitions? Does one definition prevail over the others? Do you think that the author agrees with any one particular character's ideas of evil?

Essay Topic 3

How has the situation of American blacks changed since 1929, when this play was written? Have they overcome the challenges Emperor Jones faces, or represents himself as having faced? Has the ambiguity of the play's ending been resolved by multiculturalism? Cite instances from recent history as well as instances from the script.

(see the answer keys)

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