Libra Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Why does Robert not want to buy from Ferrie?

2. Ostensibly, how did David Ferrie die?

3. What is lee regularly quizzed on in the brig?

4. What topic does Konno become particularly interested in with Lee?

5. What was Marguerite's job that she was fired from in New Orleans?

Short Essay Questions

1. What new plan is Frank Vasquez hatching on September 6th?

2. How does Guy Bannister respond to the Kennedy plot?

3. On October 4th, what does Branch learn about Kennedy's Miami visit?

4. How does Lee and Marina's relationship begin?

5. Who does Marguerite blame for her life in the Bronx?

6. What does David Ferrie do in the Bannister office in this chapter?

7. What does Lee read about in New Orleans?

8. How does DeLillo portray the shooting of Kennedy?

9. Why is Parmenter especially angry about the Bay of Pigs debacle?

10. Why is Oswald brought back to Moscow?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay about the duel narrative structure of Libra. What story does each narrative tell, and where do they connect? Who is the protagonist of each? Discuss how having two narratives allows DeLillo to discuss Oswald and the conspiracy evenly? Which narrative seems more focused and driven? Why?

Essay Topic 2

The main framing device of the two narratives of Libra is the figure of Nicholas Branch. In an essay, discuss the Branch storyline in the novel. Who is Nicholas Branch, and what is his objective in the novel? How does his life devolve in a fashion similar to Oswald's? Discuss the extent to which the rest of Libra is the product of Nicholas Branch's work.

Essay Topic 3

The character of Lee Oswald in Libra is an ambiguous figure, one whose loyalty is never clear as he moves from place to place and relationship to relationship. Write a three-part essay analyzing the shifting loyalties Oswald illustrates throughout the novel:

Part 1) Discuss Oswald's defection to the Soviet Union. At what point in his life does he decide that he should live in a Communist country? How does Soviet society appeal to Lee Oswald, and why does he eventually decide to return to the United States?

Part 2) What is Lee Oswald's life like in New Orleans. Why does he become friends with right wingers life Bannister and Ferrie despite his leftist leanings? Discuss his reasons for working in Bannister's office and why these conservative players tolerate his pro-Castro literature.

Part 3) Discuss the mindset that Oswald displays as he waits in his jail cell following Kennedy's murder. How does he rationalize his participation in the murder plot? What defense does he think he can present to authorities? How does this represent a fractured psyche?

(see the answer keys)

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