The Mound Builders 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 Delia claim they were doing to her at the hospital?

2. What is Dr. Jean Loggins' profession?

3. Why does Dan rattle on during his conversation with Delia in the middle of the night in Act 1 Part 6?

4. How is Kirsten related to Cynthia?

5. What does Dan claim is another name for the Temple Mound People?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who references a Chinese puzzle box in the play? What does this metaphor relate to?

2. How did Jean's experience as a spelling bee champion lead to her current career path? Was this a direct or indirect route?

3. How does Delia describe her ex-husband? How old was she when she married him? What was his profession?

4. Where is Dan at the end of The Mound Builders? What is the reaction of the others to this?

5. In the opening of the play, August speaks into a tape recorder. To whom is he speaking and why?

6. What is revealed to Dan in Act 2 Part 4 regarding the building of the highway? Who is responsible for this?

7. What has been discovered in Act 2 Part 1? Who tells about this discovery? What is the reaction?

8. Who wrote the poem that Dan recites in Act 1? What significance is the poem to the play?

9. Who arrives drunk after fishing near the end of Act 1? What is the relationship of these two characters?

10. What is the name of the ancient civilization that is being excavated in the play? What are some of the key characteristics of that society that are mentioned in the play?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Why does Lanford Wilson choose to set this play in two different times and places? What effect does this acheive? How does this choice relate to the theme of the play?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the Chinese proverb "When someone saves a man from drowning, he is responsible for him the rest of his life." What does this refer to in the play? What does it foreshadow?

Essay Topic 3

Define the term "motif." What is the motif in The Mound Builders? How does this motif relate to the characters in the play?

(see the answer keys)

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