M. Butterfly Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. How has life in the West been for Gallimard?

2. What does Gallimard call his relationship to Renee?

3. According to Gallimard, how many American dollars were spent for every Viet Cong killed?

4. How much time passes between the year Gallimard is fired from the embassy and the year Song travels to France to live with him?

5. What does Chin want Song to find out?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay on the theme of parenthood in the play.

1. Why does Helga want to have a baby? Why does she want Gallimard to see a doctor? Why is there conflict over this?

2. Does Gallimard want to be a father? Why or why not?

3. What are Song's motives for "mothering" Gallimard's child? How does introducing a baby change the stakes for Gallimard and Song?

Essay Topic 2

Renee is the young and beautiful student that Gallimard carries on an "extra extramarital affair" with. She differs greatly from every other female character in the play. Write an essay on the relationship Gallimard has with Renee and her importance within the structure of his story.

1. How is Renee characterized during her first meeting with Gallimard? How comfortable is she with her personality and her sexuality?

2. What is Gallimard's reason for carrying on this affair? How does he feel about Renee?

3. Why do you believe Hwang chose for this character to have the same first name as Gallimard?

Essay Topic 3

At the conclusion of Act 2, Song asks the audience to take a break while he makes his physical change from woman to man. He fully removes his makeup, wig and kimono to change into his male ensemble. Song's transformation is not limited to the physical. Even though we as an audience knew Song was a man for several scenes, the full reveal has dramatic implications.

1. Describe in detail the transformation Song makes physically, emotionally and characteristically. How does he talk to people differently? How does he treat Gallimard in Act 3 as opposed to Acts 1 and 2?

2. What is the symbolism of taking an intermission to watch song take off his makeup and change?

3. Why do you believe Hwang chose this moment in the play to fully reveal Song as a man? How would the play have changed if we had seen him as a man earlier? What would be the dramatic implications of withholding the knowledge of Song's true sex until this moment?

(see the answer keys)

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