The Gin Game Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

D. L. Coburn
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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 Weller decide to call Fonsia?

2. What mistake does Weller make in the card game at the end of Act 1?

3. What was the name of Fonsia's husband?

4. What illness does Fonsia have that requires constant care?

5. What is Weller using as a makeshift ashtray at the opening of the play?

Short Essay Questions

1. In Act 1, Scene 1, what does the condition of the stage setting suggest about the financial standing of the residents?

2. Towards the end of Act 1, Scene 2, Weller begins misinterpreting what Fonsia says. How do these misinterpretations move the play?

3. In Act 1, Scene 2, Weller states that "half of them are catatonic... and... the ones who do talk make you appreciate the ones who don't." Who is the quote in regards to, and what is it about the talking that bothers both characters?

4. Prior to the deal being made in Act 1, Scene 2, how would you characterize this scene - as more of a comedy or a tragedy?

5. How does Weller's choice of profanity conform to the opening action in Act 1, Scene 2?

6. What do you think is Weller's opinion of the other residents of the home after reading Act 1, Scene 1?

7. How does Fonsia win the last hand of Act 1, Scene 1, and what might this foreshadow?

8. What do the costumes of the two characters at the opening of Act 1, Scene 2 suggest?

9. In Act 1, Scene 2, what according to Weller "seems to happen quite a lot to [Fonsia]," and how could this be seen as helpful to the writing of the play?

10. What is knocking?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The play is considered a tragi-comedy. How does the playwright balance the tragic aspects of the play with the comic?

Essay Topic 2

How is the game of gin in this play used as a metaphor for life?

Essay Topic 3

What role does religion have in the play? How does it define the two characters of the play?

(see the answer keys)

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