|Name: _________________________||Period: ___________________|
This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.
Short Answer Questions
1. What, in the first line of "Burnt Norton," Part IV, are "time and the bell" said to have buried?
2. In the opening eight lines of the third part of "East Coker", the speaker mentions the "Directory of" what?
3. For the appeasement of what does the "trilling wire in the blood" of Part II in "Burnt Norton" sing?
4. What does the speaker in the "East Coker"'s fifth part claim becomes stranger as man grows older?
5. What must there not be in the way wherein one goes in order to get "there," according to the speaker of Part III of "East Coker"?
Short Essay Questions
1. How is the "here" of Part III of "Burnt Norton" described, and what is significant about this description?
2. What is the significance of the statement in the fifth part of "Burnt Norton," "Words strain, / Crack and sometimes break... Will not stay still"?
3. Who is the "wounded surgeon" of Part IV of "East Coker," and what indicates this within the stanza?
4. What is an interpretative possibility for the final four lines of the first part of "East Coker"?
5. What is meant by "Only by the form, the pattern, / Can words or music reach / The stillness" in "Burnt Norton"'s fifth part?
6. What is an interpretative possibility for the scene the speaker describes in the open field in the first part of "East Coker"?
7. What does the speaker mean in Part IV of "East Coker" when he states that "Our only health is the disease"?
8. What is signified by the speaker's questioning of the deceitfulness of the "quiet-voiced elders" in Part II of "East Coker"?
9. What does the speaker mean when he states in Part V of "East Coker" that "there is no competition - / There is only the fight to recover what has been lost And found and lost again and again"?
10. What is meant in the lines, "But to what purpose... I do not know," in the first part of "Burnt Norton"?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
In a critical essay, evaluate the meaning and significance of the following lines:
"Only a flicker
Over the strained time-ridden faces
Distracted from distraction by distraction
Filled with fancies and empty of meaning
Tumid apathy with no concentration"
Specifically, what is being conveyed by these lines? What is the meaning of each line? What does each line demonstrate about the condition of the human person? What do they demonstrate about human nature? How is this conception important to the interpretation of The Four Quartets? Against what is modern man struggling?
Essay Topic 2
Time is one of the three major components of The Four Quartets, and is pondered, questioned, and considered throughout the four poems. Of particular importance in Part I of "Burnt Norton" is the consideration the speaker makes of the past, particularly its relationship to possibility. Analyze this relationship in a thoughtful essay. What is time? What are the two distinct notions of time which Eliot considers throughout the poems? What is the past? How does the past relate to the present and to the future? How does one speak of the possibilities of the past? How does the past influence the possibilities of the present and the future? What images are associated with the past and its perceived and unperceived possibilities?
Essay Topic 3
Though explicitly mentioned only once, in Part V of "Burnt Norton," the Word, a conventional Christian signifier for Christ, is a vitally important concept to understanding the whole of The Four Quartets. Through careful exegesis, discuss the way in which the Word is central to the four poems. What is the Word? Why is Christ called the Word? What other significations does the Greek word "logos" have that are associated with Christ as the Word? In what way is this Word unlike all others? What is expressed by the Word? What is the relation of the Word to perfection? How is this Word, as perfection, within the world? What is significant about Its presence in the world? How can this be seen throughout the poem?
This section contains 1,202 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)