M. Butterfly 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. Why did Gallimard get scared when Isabelle screamed that she was coming?

2. What does Gallimard fear when Toulon is talking to him?

3. Who is Gallimard used to seeing play the lead in Madame Butterfly?

4. What did Gallimard replace with practicality?

5. What does Toulon state will not be part of Gallimard's job requirement?

Short Essay Questions

1. Is it ever clear if Gallimard knew Song was a man?

2. How does the character of Comrade Chin view Song's actions for the government?

3. How does the Chinese opera differ from the performance Gallimard saw at the ambassador's house?

4. Define the "Rape Mentality" that Song describes in the courtroom.

5. How has Helga's opinion on China changed when she and Gallimard return to France?

6. Describe the character of Manuel Toulon.

7. What happens when Gallimard sees Song naked for the first time?

8. What does Gallimard mean when he says he has become a celebrity?

9. What did Song mean when she said the fascination Caucasian men have for Oriental women is always "imperialist?"

10. How is Gallimard talked out of seeing the doctor?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Much of the characters' are driven by the culture they came from. There is a distinct role that the social backdrop plays in the storyline.

1. Describe the nature of the cultures that surrounds Hwang's story. Most noticeably, the Chinese and French influences. Is there any other cultures that have a personality within the plot? What are some of the characteristics we associate with each culture and how does Hwang play on them?

2. Which characters fit into their cultural stereotype? How has their culture played a part in building their personality? How does it play a part in their motives?

Essay Topic 2

Throughout the play, Gallimard serves as the narrator, and although he is the guide through the play and the vessel of the story, his own conjured characters break the fourth wall to relate certain ideas or wants of their own that differ from Gallimard's. Occasionally, they break the fourth wall to speak directly to the audience.

1. Describe Hwang's structure of the play: the point of view of the story, and order of the vignettes and the "play-within-a-play" quality of Gallimard's imagination.

2. Cite examples of Hwang "breaking the fourth wall" and theorize why Hwang chose to do so.

3. How does this familiarity with the characters change the relationship to the audience. How does it differ from a script played in the third person?

4. How does the first person narrative change our relationship with Gallimard and his emotions?

Essay Topic 3

Gallimard serves as the narrator throughout the play. The fantasies and flashbacks are his. Write a characterization of Gallimard and how he fits in with the structure of the play.

1. What was Gallimard's life like growing up? How did his days as a youth help to create the man he is now?

2. Describe Gallimard's relationship with women. Is Gallimard an attractive man? How does his physical appearance reflect his place in society? How does he talk to women? What is his sex drive like?

3. Descibe Gallimard's relationship with his wife. Why did he marry her? What is his opinion of love? How does that affect his interactions with other characters and his actions in the play?

(see the answer keys)

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