Les Liaisons Dangereuses Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Pierre Choderlos de Laclos
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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. How does Danceny give his first note to Cécile?

2. What idea does Merteuil plant in Cécile's head after the revelation of her and Danceny's love?

3. What occurs in the tale of seduction Valmont tells Merteuil in letter 79?

4. What literary tradition does Coward see as applicable?

5. Against whom does Valmont warn Merteuil in letter 70?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Cécile feel about Danceny's first letter?

2. Describe Cécile's relationship with Merteuil.

3. What event causes Cécile and Danceny to despair? What are the immediate results?

4. How does Madame de Tourvel respond to Madame de Volanges' warning about Valmont?

5. What are the general contents of Valmont's love letters to Madame de Tourvel?

6. What does the author of the Introduction say is particularly engaging about Laclos' use of the epistolary form?

7. What are Merteuil and Valmont's plans for Danceny and Cécile at the beginning of Part II?

8. Who is Merteuil's "knight," and what does she think of him?

9. What does the Editor state in the Editor's Preface?

10. How does Madame de Tourvel respond to Valmont's first love letter?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Examine the aspect of Valmont's character that has to do with his feelings for Madame de Tourvel and his feelings for Merteuil. What does he profess to feel for them both, and what does it seem that he actually feels? How does he use language and tone to express these feelings to them and about them? What do his actions around each woman, or having to do with each woman, say about his real feelings for them? Discuss this aspect of Valmont's character as a function of the tension between public and private morality and persona.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the role that religion, church, and the clergy have in the novel. How does each character treat, refer to, or interact with religion, faith and morality? Explain the reasoning behind the following categorizations of the main characters, based upon the characters' views on, or influence from, religion: Merteuil and Valmont; Madames de Rosemonde, de Volanges, and de Tourvel; Cécile and Danceny.

Essay Topic 3

Compare and contrast the different writing styles of various main characters: Cécile, Danceny, Valmont, Merteuil, Madame de Tourvel, Madame de Rosemonde, and Madame de Volanges. Are any character's style or styles of writing distinct in any way? What type of language, or what tone, is most associated with each character? To what subjects do these characters refer in their letters? How do their styles of writing contribute to the development of their characters? How do their different styles of writing contribute to the "theatricality" of the novel, to its pace, and to the audience's perception of the work?

(see the answer keys)

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