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. According to the commentary that Gallimard reads in Act 2, Scene 1, what does every man want to do to Pinkerton when they watch Madame Butterfly?

2. At what point in the plot does Scene 8 pick up?

3. Finish the sentence: "We must conserve our strength for the battles..."

4. What kind of baby does Song want to present to Gallimard?

5. Where does Song say she will be when the audience returns from their five-minute break?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay on the climactic encounter between Gallimard and Song when he asks to see her naked for the first time.

1. When Gallimard leaves the reception where he had his encounter with Toulon, what is he feeling? What is the catalyst for his emotions?

2. What are the reasons Gallimard gives for wanting to strip Song? How does she react? Why?

3. How does Song talk Gallimard out of seeing her naked? What is at stake for her?

4. How is this moment pivotal in the life of the play and the relationship between Gallimard and Song? How do his feelings for her change?

Essay Topic 2

Hwang wrote M. Butterfly after hearing details on the true account of a French diplomat falling for a cross-dressing Chinese spy. However, the spectrum of ideas presented in this play are Hwang's. Write an essay summing up the larger ideas of this play.

1. What are the political themes of this play? What did Hwang hope to achieve by resenting them dramatically? Was he successful?

2. What are the gender issues associated with this story? How is the perception of the feminine/masculine a major thematic element?

3. Dramatically, what did Hwang attempt to present with this play? What are we as the audience supposed to walk away from this story feeling or wanting?

Essay Topic 3

Gallimard claims he is pure imagination. Write an essay on what Hwang meant to portray with this plot development.

1. Do you believe Gallimard knew Song was a man? Cite examples from the story that back your argument.

2. What changes when Gallimard finally sees Song naked? How does he treat Song? How does his opinion on Song changed? According to Gallimard, what was the mistake that Song made?

3. How does Song react to Gallimard's attitude toward him?

4. How does the fantasy world different from the reality of Gallimard's situation? Which does he choose? Why?

5. What does Gallimard mean when he is "pure imagination?"

(see the answer keys)

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