In America 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. Of what do Maryna and Henryk speak the day after her performance?

2. Who is the man in the felt hat Maryna meets in Bremen?

3. Where is Zakopane?

4. Who is Krystyna?

5. When does Maryna first meet Bogdan's grandmother?

Short Essay Questions

1. Once on board the ship, the narrator gives a detailed description of the steerage section of the ship. What is the steerage section, who travels steerage, and what stigma does it hold?

2. After her performance in Chapter One, Maryna dresses and is accompanied by Bogdan to the Hotel Saski. Why are they going to the Saski? What are they celebrating? Where is the narrator?

3. To whom does Maryna write in Chapter Four? Where is she as the letter begins? Where does she go during the course of the letter? Where is she at the end of the letter? Why does the author choose a letter narration in this chapter?

4. While Maryna and her husband are busy selling their house and preparing to leave for America, a member of Maryna's family dies. Who is this person, and why is the death so upsetting for Maryna? Who else is present at the death? Where does Maryna go after the death?

5. Who does Maryna see in Bremen? What is the purpose of their meeting? How does Maryna feel at the end of the meeting?

6. The group establishes their first commune in Zakopane. What are some of the activities described in the chapter necessary to sustain their community? What do they do in the town for the local community?

7. The first of the immigrants to leave, Julian and Ryszard travel together to America. What is Ryszard anticipating for the trip? What kind of man does he hope to be when he lands in America?

8. On his passage to America, Ryszard spends time listening to English speaking passengers. He meets many Americans. How does he describe the American attitude about their country? How does this differ from the way Ryszard sees himself as a Pole?

9. How do the Saloon passengers gain entry into America? How do the steerage passengers leave the ship? How do Julian and Ryszard leave the ship, and where do they go?

10. In Chapter Four, Maryna explains that in some places, the oldest is best. However, in America she says "biggest is best." What does she mean by this? What does she see that supports her observation? Is she displeased by this?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Ryszard thinks a great deal about class and privilege while on board the Germania on his way to America. Is the ship an analogy of a social system in America? Discuss this analogy and how accurate it is for America during the late nineteenth century as described in the novel.

Essay Topic 2

In the end, Maryna chooses her life with Bogdan over a life with Ryszard. Why does she do this? What does she recognize about herself, Bogdan and Ryszard that makes her decision a clear one for her? Does she speak of sadness or regret over the decision?

Essay Topic 3

Throughout the novel, Maryna is comparing the commune to a marriage. What does she mean by this? How are the two similar in her mind? How are they different?

(see the answer keys)

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