Leaves of Grass 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 does Whitman say goes to and fro, seeking a livelihood, chattering, and chaffering?

2. How old is Whitman at the time of his writing his poems, noting this in his poems and that he is in good health?

3. What is flying aloft as the ship begins to go out into the sea in "The Ship Starting"?

4. To what does Whitman say he is near at hand with a throat to inflate itself and sing joyfully?

5. What do the lovers who exit the room after the night leave over baskets, swelling the house with their plenty?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the main reason why Whitman says that he enjoys Manhattan so much during his travels there?

2. What can be determined about Whitman's life experiences by the reading of the many poems which Whitman has crafted about the water?

3. What does the author feel about the idea of being present in the here and in the now?

4. Where was Whitman born, and how does that place affect him?

5. What are some of the similar points of religions which Whitman points out for the reader?

6. What does Whitman state about the idea of what happens after death, though he is still unsure?

7. What are some of the features of the Paumanok area of Long Island which makes the area special to Whitman?

8. What is the city which Whitman admires, though not for the pageantry and the wealth that exists in this city?

9. Who are some of the groups for which Whitman seems to have a particular affection in his poems?

10. What parts of the United States structure does Whitman have a lot of respect for?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The poet brings up an interesting idea of seeking happiness in places other than in one's self.

Part 1: Do you agree that happiness should only be found outside of one's self?

Part 2: Why do you think Whitman wants to reverse the idea of finding happiness in one's self?

Part 3: How do you find happiness in your own life? In yourself? Outside of yourself?

Essay Topic 2

People are not always what they seem, according to Whitman, and few would disagree.

Part 1: Why do you think Whitman wanted to be clear that no one is what they seem?

Part 2: Do you think you would tell a lover or friend that you are not what you appear?

Part 3: How would you react if someone told you that not all is what it seems to be?

Essay Topic 3

Whitman believes that no matter what science can uncover, the soul will supersede it.

Part 1: Why do you think Whitman believes the soul is the most important part of the world experience?

Part 2: Why can't science be bigger than the experience of the soul?

Part 3: How do you feel about the importance of the soul versus the importance of science?

(see the answer keys)

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