Joe Turner's Come and Gone 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. What is Seth having difficulty finding at the beginning of Act 1, Scene 3?

2. How long does Seth say it would take him to teach Bynum to make a pot?

3. Where did Jeremy win his dollar?

4. What instrument does Seth play?

5. What does Selig ask Seth to make with the metal sheets he's brought?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Seth's response to Molly telling him that she likes "company"?

2. What is Seth's attitude to the black men coming to the city to find work and freedom?

3. What does Bynum say in defense of Loomis?

4. How did Seth and Bertha come to have an empty room when Martha first came to the boardinghouse?

5. Describe what Bynum tells Jeremy about touching.

6. How does Seth greet Loomis when he comes down the stairs at the beginning of Act 2, Scene 1?

7. What is the first thing Loomis describes about his vision?

8. What reason does Bynum give for why he doesn't think Herald Loomis is a gambler?

9. What act does Loomis take to free himself and start anew?

10. What is the significance of Bynum's asking Loomis if he's ever been to Johnstown?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the metaphor of traveling in the play.

1) In the play, freed blacks travel across the country and become separated from each other. What motivates this traveling? What does it show about these people and their experiences?

2) Characters in the play travel in search of people and things that they've lost. What are the characters searching for? Why is travel important in their search?

3) Roads play important roles in both Bynum and Loomis' visions. Explain the significance of roads and traveling in the characters' visions.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the role of music throughout the play.

1) What role does the Juba play? What type of music is this? What is its origin and meaning, and why does it make Loomis angry?

2) What role does Jeremy's music play in the story? Why does he carry his guitar with him? What does his music say about his character?

3) What role does the song "Joe Turner's Come and Gone" play in the story? Is it important that Joe Turner's name is embodied in song? Why does the name come to Bynum through a song?

4) How does the Binding Song or Bynum's father's Healing Song relate to the role of music in the play?

Essay Topic 3

Herald Loomis says that he is trying to find a place to fit. Discuss this concept in the play.

1) Which of the characters' have found places to fit in the world? How do they fit into their destinies?

2) Is there only one place, one destiny, for each character? Is Bynum able to "match" people to the places they fit, like suggesting that Jeremy go play in the guitar contests?

3) What makes a character fit into his or her place? Does this necessarily involve a job or a relationship?

4) Can Herald Loomis be successful in finding a place to fit in the world? Will finding Martha help him do this?

(see the answer keys)

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