Ethan Frome 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. Ethan puts his arm around Mattie ________________________.

2. The Fromes take Mattie into their home because ____________________________________.

3. While Mattie dances, Ethan notices ________________________________.

4. Zeena's cat ____________________________.

5. When Zeena opens the door, Ethan is surprised by _______________________.

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Ethan claim about the state of his marriage in the letter to Zeena, and what does this show about Ethan's character?

2. What is ironic about Mattie's greeting when Ethan arrives home?

3. In what way does Ethan finally attempt a physical connection between himself and Mattie?

4. What is the atmosphere between Ethan and Mattie like after dinner?

5. Why isn't Ethan prepared for Zeena's arrival when he gets home?

6. If winter has kept him "frozen" in the same old patterns, what might the coming spring promise for Ethan Frome?

7. What inspires Ethan to try to leave Zeena?

8. In what way would Ethan have "lived" if Mattie had died, according to Mrs. Hale?

9. What might the weather foreshadow about Ethan's plans for the day?

10. Why does Ethan give up on the hope of money from Andrew Hale?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Considering the images of small town life Wharton creates in Ethan Frome, write an essay in which you argue for or against the promises and limitations of small town life exhibited in Starkfield. Use at least three characters or events as examples for your argument.

Essay Topic 2

Considering the contrasting motifs of cold and warmth or light and darkness, write an essay in which you explore the significance of Wharton's motif to the theme of her novel. Use specific examples of the motifs as support for your argument.

Essay Topic 3

Many images and ideas in Ethan Frome reflect isolation and disconnection for the main characters. Considering these ideas, write an essay in which you use examples of isolation and disconnection to explore, explain, rationalize, or defend any character's actions throughout the novel.

(see the answer keys)

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