Letters from Rifka 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. To whom is Rifka writing when the novel begins?

2. Why is Rifka's family stranded in Poland?

3. Rifka is the only one in the family who could pass for a Russian peasant _____________________.

4. "Letters from Rifka" begins in September of what year?

5. What is the ultimate destination of Rifka and her family?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Uncle Avrum's role in helping Rifka's family escape on the train?

2. What is revealed about Rifka and her family, and why they had to leave Russia?

3. Where is Rifka sent for her ringworm treatment and what organization is shepherding her through the process?

4. What is missing from Rifka's rucksack when it is returned to her and how does she feel about the loss?

5. What disease is Rifka diagnosed with in Poland and what is her prognosis?

6. Why will the steamship company not sell a ticket to Rifka for passage to America?

7. Why is Rifka acting as a distraction on the train?

8. What causes Rifka to scratch her chest until she bleeds in the night?

9. What is revealed about why Rifka and her family had to leave Russia?

10. What humiliating things are forced upon Rifka and her family by the guards and a doctor at the Polish border?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

"Letters from Rifka" is a classic example of historical fiction. What does that classification entail? Why does this book fit into this category?

Essay Topic 2

Despite the extremely trying times of people living in the post World War I immigration era, there are some who are very generous and supportive of each other. Cite at least three examples that show this strength of character and generosity.

Essay Topic 3

Write a character sketch of Papa. Be sure to include both physical and emotional characteristics as well as personal motivations, fears, etc.

(see the answer keys)

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