Middlesex 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 does the silk Lefty sells in the market not earn much money?

2. How does Milton seduce Tessie?

3. In "Opa!", why is Milton suddenly around the house more than at the diner?

4. What helps narrator feel more masculine?

5. What happens to the Zebra Room in this chapter?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the conflict between Desdemona and Lefty in the chapter "Marriage on Ice"?

2. Describe Desdemona's appearance.

3. What is particular significance of Lefty and Desdemona (brother and sister) marrying for Cal/Calliope, the narrator?

4. Describe the Greek General Hajienestis.

5. Why does Lefty visit the town of Bursa so often?

6. Describe Desdemona's transformation after Calliope's birth.

7. Describe Desdemona's silkworm box and its contents.

8. Why is Desdemona fearful about Tessie and Milton's burgeoning romantic relationship?

9. What goes through Tessie's mind as she watches movies at the theatre?

10. Describe Detroit in 1967.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

One of the themes in Middlesex is "you can't stop the inevitable". Discuss how Eugenides demonstrates this theme in the novel. Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 2

In Middlesex, a few minor characters have a major impact on the story line. Select one of the following minor characters to analyze: Father Mike, Jimmy Zismo, Chapter Eleven or Sourmelina. Discuss:

1) The personality (character traits) of this character.

2) The relationship between this minor character and the major characters in the story.

3) The impact of this character on the story line--How does s/he influence the overall story line? How would the story be different if this character was removed?

Essay Topic 3

Throughout Middlesex, Jeffrey Eugenides juxtaposes scenes from the past with the narrator's present life in Berlin. Select one of the chapters where he does this and:

1) Describe the past and present scenes presented in the chapter.

2) Discuss the relationship between the two scenes. What do the two scenes have to do with each other? Why does Eugenides choose to place these two scenes from different time periods within the same chapter?

(see the answer keys)

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