Life in the Iron Mills, and Other Stories 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. Where does Deborah go to live after serving her jail sentence in “Life in the Iron Mills”?

2. What word from “Life in the Iron Mills” means the state of being at rest, calm, or asleep?

3. Rebecca Harding and L. Clarke Davis became engaged how long after meeting?

4. What action is referenced in “Life in the Iron Mills” as “the peculiar action of a man dying of thirst”?

5. Janey tells Deborah that “the father” is in the stone house with whom in the beginning of “Life in the Iron Mills”?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Hugh look down on from his prison window at in “Life in the Iron Mills”? What does this scene make him realize?

2. What is the moment of greatest hope in “Life in the Iron Mills”? How is this hope dashed?

3. How does the author of “A Biographical Interpretation” describe Rebecca Harding Davis’s early years of marriage?

4. What decision does Hugh reach when he goes to attempt to return the money in “Life in the Iron Mills”? Why?

5. When did Rebecca Harding Davis write “Life in the Iron Mills”? Who published it?

6. How would you describe the language style in “Life in the Iron Mills”?

7. What kind of education did Rebecca Harding Davis receive, according to the author of “A Biographical Interpretation”?

8. How is the character of Janey described in “Life in the Iron Mills”? What is Janey’s relationship to the other characters?

9. What do the visitors at the mill tell Hugh Wolfe regarding his future as an artist in “Life in the Iron Mills”?

10. How did Rebecca Harding meet L. Clarke Davis? Where did they first meet, according to the author of “A Biographical Interpretation”?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Describe and discuss the characters of Dr. Manning and Jacky in “The Wife’s Story.” What about Jacky does Hester dislike? Why? How much older than Hester is Dr. Manning? How many children does Dr. Manning have from his first marriage?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the character of Hester Manning in “The Wife’s Story.” About how old do you imagine Hester to be? How does Hester describe her childhood and her relationship to her family? How does Hester feel about her husband and stepchildren?

Essay Topic 3

Examine and discuss the theme of poverty in “Life in the Mills.” How is poverty a deciding factor in the fates of the protagonists? Do you believe the protagonists in the story have a way out of their situation? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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