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. Which of the following statements best describes Lefty?

2. What tragic event occurs on the same day as Calliope's birth?

3. Who is Fard Muhammad?

4. Who does Desdemona hope that Milton will marry?

5. What happens to Milton as he is about to go into war that Desdemona believes is an answer to her prayers?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do Dr. Philobosian's and Uncle Pete's views on conception differ?

2. Describe Fard Muhammad's beliefs about the evolution of race.

3. Describe the Greek General Hajienestis.

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

5. Describe Sourmelina's appearance when Lefty and Desdemona first arrive in Detroit. What is the significance of the way she looks?

6. Why do the Ford Sociological Department workers visit Lefty's home? What do they find that concerns them?

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

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

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

10. Describe the village of Bithynios.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Describe the events that lead Calliope to decide to live her life as Cal. Then comment on his/her decision. Did s/he make the right decision? Why or why not? What would you have done if you were in the same situation?

Essay Topic 2

Sexual taboos are central to the story lines in Middlesex. Discuss how the author uses forbidden romance and sexual secrets in the novel. What is the impact of these taboos on the story? What is the author trying to say about our beliefs about sexuality? Cite several specific examples from the novel to support your ideas.

Essay Topic 3

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?

(see the answer keys)

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