Great Short Works of Herman Melville 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 two characteristics does Melville attribute to the islands of the Encantadas?

2. What does a scrivener do?

3. What office does the narrator of Bartleby hold that no longer exists?

4. What emotion does the narrator of "Cock-a-Doodle-Doo?" say he has never felt since the rooster died?

5. What surprises the narrator when he goes to his office on a Sunday?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the narrator respond the first time Bartleby answers a request with, "I would prefer not to"?

2. What does Steelkilt demand to prevent a mutiny?

3. Why does Melville refer to Oberlus as "a creature whom it is religion to detest?"

4. How is the accuracy of copy verified by scriveners?

5. What skills are necessary for a scrivener?

6. What verb tenses does Melville use in "The Two Temples" to bring immediacy to the story?

7. Why does Melville come to believe that some buccaneers on the isle of Albermarle must have been gentlemen?

8. What do the sailors in "The Encantadas" do with tortoises?

9. How does the poet Blandmour feel about poverty in "Poor Man's Pudding"?

10. Why did the two remaining followers of Steelkilt each hope to be the first out of the hold?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Melville uses brief sketches to address large issues of social justice. Select two of the stories that work together, such as "The Paradise of Bachelors" and "The Tartarus of Maids," or "The Two Temples," to analyze the social issues addressed in those comparisons.

Essay Topic 2

Melville frequently reveals the character of a narrator through the narrator's observations and reactions to another character. "Bartleby the Scrivener" and "Benito Cereno" are examples of this technique. Select one of the stories in which the narrator reveals himself. Discuss how the character is revealed and the effectiveness of this technique for you as a reader.

Essay Topic 3

Melville's elegaic pieces about the Marquis de Grandvin and others make clear the qualities he most admires. In your essay, use examples from these writings to show what qualities Melville thinks make for human greatness.

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