Harvey 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. Who is speaking to Veta Simmons as the scene opens?

2. With whom does Elwood Dowd consult about a potential dinner with Ethel Chauvenet?

3. How does Elwood Dowd describe Harvey to Dr. William Chumley's wife?

4. In whom is Ruth Kelly interested?

5. How do the employees of the sanitarium regard Dr. William Chumley?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Veta Simmons ask her daughter to be especially nice to Ethel Chauvenet?

2. Given Veta Simmons' reactions to Elwood Dowd and her daughter, do you think she truly disbelieves her brother regarding Harvey?

3. Why do you suppose Elwood Dowd insists on introducing Harvey to everyone?

4. What does Dr. Lyman Sanderson believe is Veta Simmons' motivation for coming to the sanitarium and telling him about Elwood Dowd and Harvey?

5. What do we learn about Elwood Dowd in this first scene of the play?

6. When Veta Simmons asks Elwood Dowd to wait for her in the parlor, what do you think she wants to talk to him about?

7. What does Dr. Lyman Sanderson think is best for Veta Simmons?

8. How do Ruth Kelly and Dr. Lyman Sanderson interact throughout this scene? What does this reveal about their relationship.

9. How does Elwood Dowd treat everyone on the sanitarium's staff?

10. Do you think that Ethel Chauvenet could see Harvey, given that he likes her very much?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Assuming that Harvey is real, as Elwood Dowd says he is, it creates an interesting theme in the play regarding how those with special knowledge (like Elwood Dowd) are treated by those without it (the rest of the characters). Looking at how the characters interact through this perspective, why do the other people in Elwood Dowd's life treat him the way they do? Are they feeling jealous, frightened, inadequate, or something else? Please support your positions from the text.

Essay Topic 2

Elwood Dowd's character is virtually unchanging throughout the play. What are the key elements of his personality that come out in each scene he's in? How does his demeanor compare to those around him who are "sane"? Why do you think this particular contrast is brought out by the author? Please support your answers.

Essay Topic 3

Why does Elwood Dowd comply with Veta Simmons' every wish regarding his mental health (admitting him to Chumley's Rest, administering the formula, etc.)? Why is it left to Vera Simmons to decide what happens to Elwood Dowd and, by extension, Harvey? Please support your answers.

(see the answer keys)

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