Letters to a Young Poet Test | Final 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 holiday is Rilke marking with his sixth letter?

2. Rilke says that eventually women no longer are the opposite of men, but something else. What are they?

3. In the fifth letter, Rilke tells the young poet that a package the young poet has sent to him has not arrived. What is in the package?

4. What does Rilke claim a sadness that enters into the body is in actuality?

5. What does Rilke encourage the young poet to believe about God?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Rilke believe that women are responsible for a future change in humans' approach to romantic love?

2. In letter seven, Rilke compares an ideal romantic relationship to "two solitudes [that] protect and border and salute each other." What does he mean by this?

3. What is Rilke's definition of love?

4. In letter six, Rilke encourages the young poet to maintain what he calls "a child's wise incomprehension" rather than joining in the "defensiveness and disdain" that are shared by the masses. What does he mean by this?

5. Rilke implies that security and comfort are negative. Why?

6. Explain what Rilke means when in letter eight he says that sadness "are the moments when something new has entered into us".

7. What is Rilke's view of God?

8. Why does Rilke advise the young poet "to be lonely and attentive when one is sad" in letter eight?

9. In letter six, what does Rilke tell the young poet he should do if he is lonely?

10. What does Rilke say that the average person will continue to do in regards to love?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the apparent contradiction between Rilke's separate emphases on solitude and meaningful sexual union with other human beings.

Essay Topic 2

Explain to what extent the young poet seems to have followed Rilke's advice and how it seems he develops over the course of his correspondence with Rilke.

Essay Topic 3

What is Rilke's view of the ideal sexual relationship? The ideal romantic relationship? The ideal parent-child relationship?

(see the answer keys)

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