|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 is in the narrator's briefcase?
2. When has the narrator made most of his mistakes?
3. What truth about the Brotherhood does the narrator realize in Chapter 20?
4. Why does the narrator consider his funeral speech a failure?
5. The narrator believes the Brotherhood will destroy itself. Why?
Short Essay Questions
1. Brother Jack refers to Clifton as Brutus? How does the metaphor fit the situation?
2. The narrator says that he has learned that the lack of surprise is a warning. What does he mean?
3. What puzzling irony does the narrator tell us about the human race?
4. Why is the narrator's funeral oration more moving than if he had planned a speech based according to party guidelines?
5. What strikes the narrator as the profound truth about the riot?
6. Why is Ras' anger ironic?
7. Why does Jack become angry with the man who asks the narrator to sing a "spiritual"?
8. What was the narrator's real problem, and how has he settled it?
9. How do we know at this point that the lobotomy has not been completely successful in changing the narrator's personality?
10. Why do Dupre and his men choose a particular building to burn?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
The African American people--at whatever geographic location they are found in the novel--seem to have little hope of a future that is equal to the whites in terms of wealth, status, education, or upward mobility. Whether they are in the north or the south, the forces that impede progress have much in common. For example, Norton requires a barely "post-slavery" recipient, that is, someone who needs the help he imagines he is giving, in order for his endeavors to have any meaning. Similarly, numerous philosophers have suggested that we need the poor and downtrodden among us in order to have a subject upon which to practice charity. Discuss several different ways in which this attitude is expressed in the novel. Show what this approach of using a particular group target upon which to practice an ideology accomplishes both for the subject group and for the "charitable" or practicing entity.
Essay Topic 2
In his last meeting with Hambro, the narrator is told that his own members--the blacks in Harlem--must be sacrificed for the good of the Brotherhood and that they will be making temporary alliances with other groups. Since the alliance with the blacks seems to have accomplished nothing for the blacks themselves, what was the purpose of the work in Harlem? Why did it fail? How did the alliance--if such it could be called--contribute to the riot?
Essay Topic 3
Explain the symbolism of the following items: the figurine bank, the dark glasses, the briefcase, the dancing dolls, the piece of chain.
This section contains 1,256 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)