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. What does Callie witness late one night that foreshadows the violent turn that the riots will take?

2. What shocks Desdemona and Lefty about Sourmelina's husband, Jimmy Zismo?

3. Why do Lefty and Desdemona know that they can trust Sourmelina to keep the secret that they are siblings?

4. Who does Desdemona over hear through the heating vents in the Silk Room of the Temple No. 1?

5. What does Desdemona attempt to smuggle into the U.S. in her silkworm box?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. Describe the narrator in Book 2, Ex Ovo Omina.

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

4. Why do Desdemona and Lefty pretend that they do not know each other while aboard the Giulia?

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

6. How does Desdemona react to the speeches that she hears through the heating grates while working in the Silk Room?

7. Compare Lefty's original Zebra Room to Milton's version of the Zebra Room.

8. Why does Desdemona become concerned about her unborn child after talking with Dr. Philobosian?

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

10. Compare Milton's and Mike Antoniou's views on religion.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There are several characters who influence the person that the narrator becomes. Select the two characters who you believe have the greatest impact on her development and:

1) describe each character's actions or beliefs as they relate to Cal/Calliope.

2) discuss the impact of this character on Cal/Calliope's life and personality.

3) discuss why you selected each particular character. What about each character made him/her more of an influence on Cal/Calliope than others?

Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the relationship between tradition and the modernity in Middlesex. How does the author represent the traditional and the modern in the story? How do the two interact with each other? What is the impact of modernity on tradition? Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 3

Middlesex is a first person narrative written from the point of view of Cal. Discuss how this fact influences the story? What biases does Cal bring to the story? How would the nove be different if another character was telling the story? Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

(see the answer keys)

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