Marat / Sade 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. According to the Herald at the end of Scene 4, what is the audience about to watch Marat do?

2. With what term does Sade describe the execution of Damiens?

3. In the beginning of Scene 6, a patient claims that all are free and equal to do what?

4. What word do the patients chant in unison in Scene 6?

5. At the end of Scene 11, where does Corday imagine she is?

Short Essay Questions

1. What horrors does Corday witness in Scene 10?

2. What satirical argument does Sade make about the aristocracy at the end of this section?

3. How does Corday prepare to murder Marat in Scene 10?

4. How does the Herald characterize Sade?

5. How does Sade explain his current role in the Revolution?

6. What point about social status does the Herald make when he introduces the Singers?

7. In Scene 8, how does Marat explain that the expectations of the Revolution proved faulty?

8. What recommendation does Coulmier make to Sade and the assembled actors at the end of Scene 6?

9. To what extent are Coulmier's fears throughout the play well-founded?

10. Describe the argument Sade and Marat have regarding compassion.

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

In the play-within-the-play, Sade has created a sort of spectrum from far-left (Roux) to the far-right (Corday). Where do all the major players in this play fall on this spectrum? What does each extreme of this spectrum want regarding France? What is its ideal society? Does Sade present both as equally dangerous in the play?

Essay Topic 2

In the great debate between Sade and Mart, Sade's viewpoint is more complex and ambiguous. As an aristocrat turned Revolutionary turned voice for political apathy, his worldview is strange and inwardly focused. Write an essay on etymology of this viewpoint. Why did Sade join the Revolution, and why was he repelled by it? What does he view as most important in life? What is his attitude toward violence and its place in society?

Essay Topic 3

In Weiss's play, sex and violence are intertwined in a way such that one cannot exist without the other. Write an essay on this inextricable link, focusing on these three points:

Part 1) How does Charlotte Corday represent the perfect balance of sexuality and destruction? How does her plan to murder Marat hinge on her sexual allure? How does her religious fervor play to both of these attributes?

Part 2) The Marquis de Sade was infamous for his linking of sex and violence in his writing. How does the Sade of Weiss's play explain this fascination? What is his attitude to either sex or violence individually?

Part 3) Focusing on Sade's speech to Marat before Corday's third visit, discuss both sex and violence as driving forces both in the play and the play-within-the play.

(see the answer keys)

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