The Memorandum 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. What does Stroll tell Gross is necessary in order to prevent any further individualism?

2. What does Gross fear if he does not agree to the switch?

3. What is still in its infancy and talked about as if it were a baby?

4. What point is the author trying to make by having Hana make separate trips for food?

5. What does Gross' lack of Ptydepe knowledge signal, according to Lear?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Gross justify his situation to himself towards the end of Act 1, Scene 4?

2. What does Helena's request for Maria to help her make coffee symbolize?

3. What important message does Maria give to Gross at the beginning of the second part of Act 2, Scene 9, part 2 about winning, and how does it apply to his situation?

4. What possibility does Lear's empty classroom at the end of Act 2, Scene 8 symbolize?

5. What does Havel use the reference of a theater to symbolize?

6. What explanation does Ballas offer to Gross and what position does he offer him?

7. What are some examples of Stroll's initial behavior that further symbolize the intention of keeping Gross out of the loop?

8. What is different about Gross and his approach in the very beginning of Act 2, Scene 10?

9. What are some examples in Scene 6 of Gross being continually kept of the loop?

10. What are some of the differences between Ballas and Gross in their experiences as Managing Director?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

One of the writing techniques used by Havel is the repeated cycles he creates for the story. This is a way for an event or situation to be "recycled" in order to make a point. Describe in detail an example of how events were repeated for which characters. Were the events exactly the same as when they appeared originally in the play? If not, what was different about them? Why did Havel choose to make these changes? For each repeated event, also include the point Havel makes with it.

Essay Topic 2

Thumb is an essential part of the bureaucratic system, even though he seems largely unaware of it. What is his specific role in the play and in the larger theme of the story? Which character traits allow him to fulfill that role? What are the more serious dangers that Thumb represents a warning against?

Essay Topic 3

Havel introduces many forms of symbolism by using objects to illustrate his point.

1) Choose three different objects that are a form of symbolism and describe in detail what they represent. Include how they are used in the storyline and why they are effective. What is Havel trying to tell the audience with each of them?

2) Out of the examples you chose in the first section, are there any that are more important to the plot? What makes them more important? How do they fit into the overall theme and main point of the play?

(see the answer keys)

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