Native Son Test | Final 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. Bigger finally shakes down the ashes, but he doesn't remove them from the furnace, he just adds more coal. What happens then?

2. While hidden Bigger reads a newspaper about the search for him. Why do the authorities still think Jan Erlone is the mastermind behind the entire murder and ransom?

3. On the streetcar on the way to Bessie's apartment what does Bigger want to shout?

4. What are Bigger's plans for the kidnapping farce?

5. What happens when Britten backs Bigger against the wall and grabs his collar asking him about the pamphlets Jan Erlone gave him?

Short Essay Questions

1. What was Bigger's fatal mistake in his plan to dispose of Mary's body?

2. When did Bigger realize how quickly news was going to spread that he had killed Mary?

3. How did Bigger feel about killing Bessie?

4. What deterred the Daltons from being excessively concerned when they found Mary wasn't in the house the morning after she was murdered?

5. When Bigger awoke in the morning after Mary's death, what happened when he remembered what he had done the night before?

6. Bigger was very much interested in reading about himself in the newspapers. Of what significance was this?

7. Describe Bigger's treatment when he was finally caught.

8. What kind of power did Bigger have over Bessie that she continued to obey his direction even though she knew it was wrong?

9. As Bigger arrived at the Dalton home on the morning after Mary's murder how was he feeling?

10. What was Bessie's reaction when Bigger arrived at her apartment the morning after the murder of Mary?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Use of Actual Historical Events:

The author of this novel, Richard Wright, used actual historical events in the novel to bring more life to the story and to aid in his plot. In particular he mentioned the Scottsboro Boys and the Leob and Leopold Case. Write an essay about these cases and how they fit into the novel. Add any additional points used that were from real historical events.

Essay Topic 2

At the very end of the story Max is upset when Bigger comes to the conclusion that it must have been good that he killed. In an essay explain Bigger's reasoning and how he came to that conclusion. Also explain what Max is trying to make Bigger understand after he comes to this conclusion. Why might the two men have different views on this subject?

Essay Topic 3

Fear, Flight and Fate Themes:

Write an essay about the way each of these themes were demonstrated in the story. Did any of them intertwine? If so, when/how?

(see the answer keys)

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