My Name Is Asher Lev 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 the mashpia call Asher?

2. Yudel Krinsky describes Siberia as the home of which being?

3. Which person's picture is on the wall in every classroom at Asher's school?

4. The Lev family doctor warns Asher about the lead in which color of paint?

5. In Chapter 2, Aryeh is greatly disturbed at the brutal deaths of which group of people?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Rivkeh want to enter the university?

2. What happens to the Russian writers? How do the Levs react?

3. Several times in Chapter 4, Aryeh explains his reasons for wanting to go to Europe to work for the Rebbe. Explain some of those reasons.

4. What happened to Yudel Krinsky in Russia? Describe some of his life before coming to the United States.

5. The mashpia talks with Asher about his behavior in school, such as his drawing the Rebbe in the Chumash. Then, he leaves Asher in the office with a notebook. What happens next?

6. What does Asher know about his paternal grandfather?

7. In Chapter 6 as Rivkeh and Asher adjust to life on their own, Rivkeh begins to talk about her grief over Yaakov's death. Which people in her life died prematurely, and how did she feel when that happened?

8. At the end of Chapter 3, Asher draws a picture of Stalin in his notebook without realizing it. What do you think is happening in Asher's mind when he draws things without being aware of it?

9. Why doesn't Asher want to go to Vienna?

10. Yudel Krinsky mentions several differences between Russia and the United States. What is one difference?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Jacob Kahn feels that it is necessary for Asher to learn to paint nudes. What do you think Asher's artistic education would have lost without learning to paint nudes? What value is there in that activity? Explain.

Essay Topic 2

Aryeh Lev risks his health and at times his life to help bring Russian Jews to safety, even though Rivkeh and Asher worry about him intensely. Do you think Aryeh makes a wise decision to travel abroad for the Rebbe, or do you think he would have been wiser to stay in Brooklyn? Write your idea of what might have happened if Aryeh had stayed in Brooklyn during Asher's artistically formative years.

Essay Topic 3

By the end of the book, the Rebbe believes that Asher has gone too far in his artwork and is now hurting those who love him, although he claims to understand Asher's work. Do you think the Rebbe would have preferred Asher to stay within the acceptable limits of the Ladover Hasidic faith? What do you imagine a reasonable Ladover Hasidic artist would paint? Try to imagine and explain some symbols other than the crucifixion that Asher could have used to convey ultimate suffering, symbols that would have been better received by Asher's community.

(see the answer keys)

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