Light in August 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. What does Christmas do when he returns to the spring?

2. What does Lena carry to prevent them from getting dirty?

3. How does Mr. McEachern punish Christmas in the stable

4. How many days pass before Christmas is returned to the orphanage?

5. What does Christmas announce to everyone present?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do the people get their first indications that something is awry in the Hightower marriage?

2. How does trouble find Byron anyway?

3. The author uses the literary technique of a flashback at this point in the book. What purpose does this serve?

4. What does the dietician's pink toothpaste symbolize for Christmas?

5. How does the Hightower marriage eventually end?

6. Why does Christmas wish that McEachern would discover his absence in the house this night and try to stop him?

7. Who does the dietician turn to in her plans to ruin Christmas?

8. Why does the fourteen-year-old Christmas beat the Negro girl instead of having sex with her like the other boys do?

9. Why does Byron Bunch spend so much time at his job at the planing mill?

10. What are Byron Bunch's first impressions of Joe Christmas?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Why do you think Hightower is really forced to resign from his minister position? Was it because his wife disgraced him with improper behavior? Or is there some hidden story related to rumors of his homosexuality? Explain your perspective.

Essay Topic 2

A major theme in the book is the status and treatment of women in society. Why are women who step outside the boundaries of so-called proper behavior chastised and alienated by the men but accepted by the women? Why are the prominent men in the town especially anxious to get rid of Lena? Why do they not show any compassion for the young woman?

Essay Topic 3

The town of Jefferson seems to be filled with misfits. This is not uncommon in the Southern Gothic style of literature which Faulkner writes. Why do you think there are so many unusual or eccentric characters? Could the story be told with more average characters or is it necessary to populate the town with eccentrics? Explain in context with other Southern Gothic literature with which you may be familiar.

(see the answer keys)

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