Jailbird 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. Why aren't Clewes and Starbuck friends anymore?

2. What was Hapgood's default defense for people?

3. About children, Ruth prophesied, "If I had one, it would be a _______."

4. Why are the people of Vicuna leaving their planet?

5. Starbuck is narrating from _______ after his release.

Short Essay Questions

1. What are the degrees of separation between Sarah Wyatt and Mary Kathleen O'Looney in Chapter 9?

2. Why did Starbuck agree to be McCone's protégé?

3. Is Starbuck's release from prison entering the new or returning to the old?

4. What was the nature of Starbuck's relationship with Nixon?

5. How is "a rich man's trash can" a symbol for Starbuck?

6. Did Ruth's prophesy about her son come true? What is the nature of Starbuck and Ruth's son?

7. What do we learn about Starbuck by his attitude towards the red ribbon?

8. What does Starbuck's release from prison mark?

9. Why is Starbuck a socialist?

10. How did Starbuck meet his wife, Ruth? Why was the beginning of their relationship rocky?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

A majority of Starbuck's story in "Jailbird" is reflection on the past and how he came to be as he is in the present. Discuss Starbuck's retrospective point of view with him and his reality.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss how Starbuck's narrative voice reflects his mind and the effect on the reader's experience and understanding.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss madness and psychosis in "Jailbird." How do people develop instability? How it is handled? What is Vonnegut's purpose for using psychosis in the larger narrative ?

(see the answer keys)

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