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 say in Act 1 that she is frantically beating the bushes for?

2. Who is the author of the Aztec poem that is recited in Act 1?

3. Who calls Dan a Howdy-Dowdy, hale-fellow, nice guy in Act 1?

4. Where does Jean develop an interest in medicine?

5. What does Chad offer to give Jean in Act 1?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Delia compare her book to? Why?

2. What is the outcome of "Legacy" to August at the end of the play? How does this make him a Tragic Hero?

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

4. Who is the character named Chad? How does he relate to the other characters in the play? What is his position in relation to the house and the excavation site?

5. Who is Professor August Howe? How old is he? What is his profession?

6. Who's character studied books written by Delia in college? How did he/she feel about those books?

7. Early in Act 1, Kirsten hears a noise in the night. What does she hear and who comes to comfort her?

8. What is a God-king?

9. Describe the relationship between Jean and Chad. Why does he show her the model in Act 1?

10. What is the primary motif used in the play? How does this motif symbolize the main character, and how does it relate to the theme?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Give the characteristics of a Tragic Hero. How is August the Tragic Hero of The Mound Builders? What characteristics does he share with the ancient Greek idea of Tragic Hero?

Essay Topic 2

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 3

Why do you think Lanford Wilson chose to title this play, "The Mound Builders?" What does that title reflect in the action of the play? How is it symbolic to the theme?

(see the answer keys)

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