|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 does Danceny do to Merteuil, as reported by Madame de Volanges in letter 168?
2. What does Madame de Tourvel regret in letter 124?
3. What does Valmont tell Danceny in letter 89?
4. Why has Merteuil never remarried?
5. About what does Valmont mock Merteuil in letter 158?
Short Essay Questions
1. What does Valmont vow about his seduction of Madame de Tourvel, and how does he plan to carry out his plan?
2. How does Valmont thwart Merteuil with regards to Danceny?
3. What arguments does Valmont use to convince Madame de Tourvel to see him?
4. Describe how Madame de Tourvel changes after being abandoned by Valmont.
5. Describe Merteuil's end in the novel.
6. Describe Valmont's response to Merteuil's affair with Danceny.
7. What is the general content of the letter Azolan, Valmont's valet, writes to Valmont?
8. Summarize Bertrand's letters to Madame de Rosemonde.
9. Summarize Merteuil's tale of her ruination of Prévan's.
10. What news of Valmont does Madame de Rosemonde give Madame de Tourvel, and how does Madame de Tourvel react?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
Explore the strange, though steady, friendly relationship that Merteuil and Valmont have maintained with one another. Describe the tone that Merteuil and Valmont's letters take with each other throughout most of the novel. What do these letters say specifically about Valmont and Merteuil's relationship and their past, and what do the letters merely imply or hint at? Why does their relationship fail--is it the result of an action, an event, another person, an exterior or interior force? Examine the friction that has taken place between Merteuil and Valmont throughout the novel. How does Merteuil typically respond to Valmont's letters about Madame de Tourvel? How does Merteuil judge Valmont's feelings for Madame de Tourvel or his motivations in pursuing her? How does Valmont defend his motivations and his feelings to Merteuil, and what promise did he continually remind her of? Why would such a reminder perhaps irritate Merteuil? What is the tone and direction of their correspondence once Merteuil decided to take Danceny as a lover?
Essay Topic 2
Compare and contrast the Publisher's Note and Editor's Preface. What is their significance to the work? What messages are they each trying to get across? What is the tone of each? How do they try to influence the readers of the novel? In which ways do they define the work? Why does Laclos include them both? After reading the novel, do you read them or understand them in a different way? How do they compare to typical prefatory material in other works? Is the Publisher's Note after the last letter related in any way to Laclos' introductions?
Essay Topic 3
Examine the uses of irony throughout the novel. Your discussion may include: instances of satire, for instance of contemporary literary works or public figures; anything from the sarcastic tone often taken by Merteuil and Valmont in their letters to each other; the many instances of figurative language in the text such as puns and double entendres; the instances of certain characters' hypocrisy or denial; or the dramatic irony through which the reader or character knows something that another character does not. How does Laclos achieve irony? What language, tone, and style of writing indicate irony in the text? How do certain situations where characters find themselves tend toward the ironic?
This section contains 1,359 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)