Hard Times; an Oral History of the Great Depression Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book Test - Hard

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 did many of Arthur Robinson's friends say was the only reason to have money?

2. In a quote in the Introduction, how does the speaker describe the socioeconomic relationship between blacks and whites during the Depression?

3. According to Terkel in the Introduction, what voice dominated the radio alongside Roosevelt's during the Depression?

4. Where did Arthur Robinson keep thousands of dollars during the bank holiday?

5. According to Doc Graham, what was the only good thing Roosevelt did?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Alf Landon recall his 1936 campaign against Roosevelt in the book?

2. What is Doc Graham's attitude toward Franklin Roosevelt?

3. How did Yip Harburg find his way to making music?

4. What was Dr. Townsend's contribution to the Depression-era discourse?

5. In the Depression-era Midwest, how did corn prices lead to corn being burned and pigs being slaughtered?

6. According to James Farley, how did Roosevelt alienate members of his own administration?

7. What role did Elsa Ponselle play in the forming of the Teacher's Union?

8. Why does Myrna Loy think she never got to meet Roosevelt in person?

9. What humiliation did Ward James face seeking relief in the 1930's?

10. How did The Cradle Will Rock become a lightning rod of controversy?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

The Great Depression was a time during which the most basic and reliable of systems in the United States failed. Though full-on revolution never broke out in America, dissident movements cropped up regularly. Write an essay about three such movements. What issue or injustice gave rise to this spontaneous act of dissidence? How did the movement grow in strength? What happened that finally put an end to the movement?

Part 1) The Bonus March.

Part 2) The opening night of The Cradle Will Rock.

Part 3) The farmers of Iowa stopping corn deliveries.

Essay Topic 2

Write an essay about the tactic used by union supporters in the 1930's Rust Belt. How did they effectively shut down plants, stopping the introduction of scabs and limiting the union-busting? What kind of press did these strikes get, and how was Governor Frank Murphy of Michigan leveled by these events? What effect did the passage of the Wagner Act have on the ability of workers to unionize?

Essay Topic 3

Studs Terkel mentions throughout the book that the Roosevelt administration had a vested interest in chronicling the realities of the Depression as it was happening. Write an essay about three of these historical/artistic documents. What specific component of the Depression experience did each highlight? What was its medium? How was it received at the time and since? Why did the Roosevelt administration avoid publicizing that it was funding this sort of archiving work?

Part 1) Tobacco Road.

Part 2) The River.

Part 3) Dorothea Lange's portraits.

(see the answer keys)

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