Libra 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. With whom does Oswald live immediately after arriving in Fort Worth?

2. What does lee call the article he writes at the end of the chapter?

3. What does Lee request of the State Department in this chapter?

4. With whom does Marina spend much of her time in Texas?

5. Why does Lee's mother initially dislike Marina?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why do Lee and Marina decide to return to America?

2. How does Mackey subvert the assassination ploy on July 15th?

3. Describe the interviews Oswald has in Moscow?

4. How do Lee and Marina settle into Fort Worth?

5. How does Lee Oswald try to expedite his meeting with Soviet agents after his suicide attempt?

6. How does the move to Fort Worth affect Lee and Marina's marriage?

7. Why does Lee Oswald try to kill himself in Moscow?

8. Describe Lee's life in Minsk after returning from the U-2 Interrogation.

9. On August 12th, what concerns does Win Everett express to Parmenter?

10. What strange items has the CIA curator provided Branch with?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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 2

Write an essay about the value of intelligence in Libra. How does the life of Lee Oswald reflect the way information is monetized? Why is Lee Oswald given a flat and a job in Minsk by the Soviets? Why do both the CIA and the FBI express interest in Oswald after his return to the US? Discuss how Oswald, because of his faulty understanding of his intelligence, proves useless to these agencies.

Essay Topic 3

Write an essay about the nihilistic tone of Libra. To what extend do the events of the novel add up to a sum of nothing thematically? What impels Lee Oswald toward his final end? Does Win Everett achieve anything he intended? In the end, does President Kennedy die for any reason? Discuss if the world of Libra is one in which fate or some higher power guides characters' ends.

(see the answer keys)

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