Mumbo Jumbo 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 Hinkle Von Vampton ask Biff Musclewhite to do for him?

2. What does Yellow Jack say to make Berbelang angry?

3. Why does Reed say the Atonists relish Death?

4. What does Berbelang object to, in how people look at Van Gogh?

5. Who does Ishmael Reed credit with developing the “grapevine telegraph?

Short Essay Questions

1. What changes does Peter Pick recommend for the Plantation House scene?

2. What is PaPaLaBas’ practice?

3. How does Woodrow Wilson Jefferson end up being hired by the Benign Monster?

4. What definitions of the Jes Grew are offered at the beginning of Mumbo Jumbo?

5. How does Charlotte’s predicament get resolved?

6. What is the meaning when Safecracker Gould says that “the dances were difficult to write down” (p. 103)?

7. How does Reed characterize America in Mumbo Jumbo?

8. What happens when the Mayor of New Orleans responds to the Jes Grew outbreak?

9. What is Warren G. Harding’s role in Mumbo Jumbo?

10. Why is Thor distrusted?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In what ways is Mumbo Jumbo relevant to contemporary readers? What contemporary issues are in play in the book, and how would the book contribute to contemporary discussion? Cite specific discussions from contemporary sources, and cite specific instances from the book, that describe its contemporary relevance.

Essay Topic 2

Identify the most important plot points in Mumbo Jumbo. What is at stake in each of these moments? What possibilities do these moments present, and how are those possibilities channeled into specific actions or events? How does the plot chart its course among other alternative or possible plots?

Essay Topic 3

What does the experience of the Mu’tafikah tell you about making art? Why should art be kept close to the people who create it? Why is art out of context dangerous, or lifeless? What does that mean for Mumbo Jumbo the novel? What is the proper home for this book?

(see the answer keys)

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