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. What is a ritual feeding of the poor?

2. All morning Mauvant is muttering that he is ________________ but no one pays him much attention.

3. Macena is the father of her children so she must do what?

4. This woman is a successful ____________ (market woman).

5. ____________ is finally reacted by Karen, Alourdes and their traveling companions.

Short Essay Questions

1. How is Sina's strength revealed in this chapter?

2. How does jealousy affect the plot of this story?

3. What is made clear in this chapter that we as Americans often fail to understand?

4. What is Alourdes' purpose for arranging the 'manje pov?'

5. What is the connection between one's power and the will of the spirits in the world of Vodou?

6. Who does Aunt Emma represent? Why is this important?

7. What is one of the most important lessons learned about the practice of Vodou from reading this book? How is Karen's involvement in Mama Lola's story important to most readers of this book?

8. How are vodou ideals understood? Give an example from the text that supports this. How might a modern-day American reader feel about this?

9. Describe Vodou rituals and ceremonies as a whole. Give an example from this chapter that supports this.

10. What story takes place regarding Alourdes in the previous chapter? How is this related to this chapter?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Karen and Alourdes are greeted in Haiti with a mix of fascination and expectation.

Part 1) Describe Alourdes and Karen's trip to Haiti. Why are they greeted in this way? What does this reveal about Karen, Alourdes, and the Haitian people?

Part 2) How does this greeting to one's greeting upon arriving in a community in the U.S.? Why would these similarities and/or differences exist?

Part 3) How might you be greeted in Haiti? Why might you be greeted in this way? How are people greeted in this way? How are people greeted into various countries and cultures around the world? Why do these differences exist? How do these differences reflect the relationships between various groups of people?

Essay Topic 2

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?

Essay Topic 3

Vodou is a part of Haitian culture.

Part 1) Describe Vodou and Haitian culture. How is Vodou incorporated into everyday life in Haiti? How is it also similar to other religions?

Part 2) What religions are important and influential in the U.S.? How does religion affect the lives of many Americans? How does it influence the way our country was created and is now organized and run?

Part 3) Is religion a part of your own life? If so, how If not, why not? How different might your life be if you practiced Vodou? Explain.

(see the answer keys)

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