Mama Lola: A Vodou Priestess in Brooklyn Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Karen McCarthy Brown
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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 Manman Marasa?

2. What is the reasoning for the answer to number 96?

3. The journey into rural Haiti is ____________ one.

4. Most of the compound's women have made the long journey down the mountain to what?

5. What does she learn from her sister-in-law?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does the author say is the purpose of every other chapter in the book? What does this reveal about the author's role in writing these chapters?

2. What does Sina's character reveal about women in this culture? How do the women compare to the men?

3. Describe Karen's understanding of Alourdes' "Queen Bee" behavior.

4. How are Sina and Philo similar? What actions do they take? What does this reveal about them?

5. What is it like being a manbo? How does Alourdes feel about this?

6. What do most Americans think of "voodoo?"

7. How is jealousy significant in Haiti?

8. How is Marie Claire significant?

9. Why is oral tradition important in this culture?

10. How do Alourdes and Maggie feel in American culture? Should they feel this way? Why or why not?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There are many short, fictitious stories in this book.

Part 1) Describe two of these short stories. How is each important to the book? What do they each reveal about Haiti, Alourdes' family, and/or Vodou?

Part 2) How are these stories representatives of Haiti's oral tradition? Why is oral history so important to Alourdes' culture? How are the people of Haiti influenced by stories such as these?

Part 3) How is oral history important to other cultures around the world? How is it also a part of American culture? Why might fictitious stories be universal? Why are they created by humans?

Essay Topic 2

Imagery and metaphors are used frequently throughout this book.

Part 1) Describe the imagery and metaphors found in this book. How are these connected to the stories in this book and the book as a whole?

Part 2) How is imagery important in oral traditions? Why is it so important? How is this importance reflected in this book?

Part 3) What other literary devices can be found in this book? How are they used? Are they effective? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

There is a growing need for Manbos.

Part 1) What is a manbo? How is this person important in Vodou culture? Why are manbos increasingly more important in Haiti? What does this reveal about Vodou culture and life in Haiti?

Part 2) How are these cultural changes seen in other cultures around the world? How is religion becoming more important in some cultures? Why?

Part 3) Would you want to be a manbo? Why or why not? Would you be able to accept a role such as this in another religious organization, if it were offered to you or asked of you? Why or why not? How do manbos reflect the role of religious leaders in a community?

(see the answer keys)

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