Mule Bone 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 Sister Jones say she won't testify for Jim Weston?

2. What are Joe Clarke and Deacon Simms doing when Jim Weston and Dave Carter arrive at the store?

3. How does Joe Clarke defend himself against Sisters Taylor and Thomas when he arrives at the trial?

4. What draws Joe Clarke's attention to Jim Weston and Dave Carter's fight?

5. What is Mary Ella's criticism about the Methodist Church?

Short Essay Questions

1. What evidence suggests that Joe Clarke will not be an impartial judge in Jim's trial?

2. What complaint does Walter make about Baptist theology?

3. What excuse does Dave offer to prove that he is not on his way to visit Daisy?

4. What kind of relationship does Daisy seem to have with her mother?

5. How does Jim react to meeting Daisy as she is on her way back to town?

6. How does Joe Clarke defend his decision to oversee the trial?

7. Describe the interaction between Sister Taylor and the children.

8. How does Mrs. Thomas' show herself to be hypocrite with her response to Mrs. Blunt's request?

9. How do the children's religious background become a competition?

10. Describe the men's reaction to Deacon Simms' arrival.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Hughes and Hurston use a Southern dialect in the dialogue of the play in order to bring authenticity to the characters. Some of their contemporaries opposed this use of dialect, complaining that the characters are made to seem uneducated and simple. Even today, academics debate the use of dialect in this and other literary works. Defend or attack the authors' use of dialect in the play. Does dialect make the characters realistic, or is it demeaning to African-Americans from the South? Provide examples from the text to support your answer.

Essay Topic 2

Throughout the play, adults behave like children, and children mirror the behavior of the adults. Explain how this circle of immature behavior creates a dysfunctional community. Provide examples from the text to support your points.

Essay Topic 3

Many people who read "Mule Bone" feel that the play should not be staged because of the satirical picture it presents of African-American life. Hughes and Hurston filled the play with exaggerated stereotypes in an attempt to allow African-Americans to laugh at themselves. To the authors, a culture can never truly be equal unless it has the freedom to laugh at itself. However, others feel -- even today -- that the play is demeaning and should not be given attention. Defend or attack the authors' position. Should the play be produced and staged? Why or why not? Provide examples from the text to support your position.

(see the answer keys)

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