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. In 20 May, what request does Oswald make in Bannister's office?

2. From whom does Lee get his unauthorized gun Atsugi?

3. What does Lee not tell Dr. Braunfels about himself?

4. Who told George de Mohrenschildt to meet with Oswald?

5. Why is Lee mocked at his school in the Bronx?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who are the exiles on May 20th?

2. How does Lee fair in the brig?

3. What confidential information does Lee reveal to Konno in Atsugi?

4. Why does Lee go to meet Dr. Braunfels in Atsugi?

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

6. Why is Lee banned from the Sproul house?

7. Why do Lee and Marguerite argue in New Orleans?

8. What does Lee read about in New Orleans?

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

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay about insanity and disassociation in Libra. What mechanisms does Lee Oswald use to assume false identities, and how does this allow him disassociate himself from his actions? Discuss how Lee's view of the world becomes skewed. What delusions does he desperately hold on to? What false patterns does he begin to see in everyday life, and how does this fuel his willingness to kill Kennedy?

Essay Topic 2

In writing Libra, Don DeLillo faces the deep challenge to make an unimaginably despised man understandable. Write an essay in three parts discussing three unthinkable actions that Oswald undertakes in the novel:

Part 1) How does DeLillo dramatize Oswald's suicide attempt in Moscow? Discuss what leads up to this self-destructive act and whether Oswald seems committed to his own negation. What is going through Oswald's head as he cuts his wrists? What is relatable about these passages?

Part 2) How does Don DeLillo introduce domestic violence into the novel? Discuss how the author portrays the protagonist's mindset as he begins beating Marina. Why does he begin striking her? Can the reader understand his rationale.

Part 3) Discuss Lee Oswald's perception of the assassination as he plays his active role in it. Compare it to the reactions of those on the street. At what point does he acknowledge what he has done? Does she ever fully accept his culpability?

Essay Topic 3

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?

(see the answer keys)

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