Libra 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. Who is Delphine?

2. Who calls Mackey on June 19th looking for work?

3. What does Parmenter want hit in the assassination attempt besides the presidential limo?

4. What plan does Lee develop for his future while in Atsugi?

5. According to Bannister on June 19th, who does Kennedy travel with at all times?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Lee Oswald punished before shipping out?

2. How does Lee meet David Ferrie?

3. Discuss how Branch sees death surrounding Oswald?

4. What initial actions do the CIA men take for their plan on April 17th?

5. What does George de Mohrenschildt tell Parmenter about Oswald in this chapter?

6. What is Lee's life in New Orleans like?

7. What does Win Everett decide about the assassination location in 26 April?

8. What does Lee dream about doing while in New Orleans?

9. Describe the colorful conversation Bannister has at a bar on June 19th.

10. Describe Nicholas Branch's life.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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?

Essay Topic 2

Write an essay about Lee Oswald's private relationship with the concept of history. At what point in Oswald's personal development does he begin to consider himself a major player of history? How does he try to impress himself upon the scope of history? Discuss the process by which Oswald realizes he will not affect history in a positive way, and how this skews his view of the world.

Essay Topic 3

Write an essay about the character of Marguerite. How does Don DeLillo use her to frame the story, and to what extent does she reemerge as a sort of Greek chorus, commenting on Lee's fate? Why do her passages often involve the first person? Analyze her personality and neuroses: how do they reveal an ability to see the world as it is?

(see the answer keys)

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