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. What does the white cat do while Bigger is being questioned by the police and reporters?

2. What did Bigger's mother say to him after she awakens the morning after the killing?

3. In book two when Bigger finally falls asleep after hearing Peggy and Mrs. Dalton talking about Mary, what does he recall in his dream?

4. Where does Bigger make his last stand?

5. What goes through Bigger's mind when he hears the music from the church?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did Bigger feel about killing Bessie?

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

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

4. Why did Bigger decide to try to blame Jan and the Communist Party for the kidnapping?

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

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

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

8. In Book two, what does Bigger do at the drug store?

9. In what ways was Bigger's capture similar to the opening of the book when Bigger chased, eventually killing the rat?

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

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

Symbolism of words "White" and "Black"

The author of this novel, Richard Wright, has used the words "Black" and "White" heavily throughout this novel. Write an essay on the symbolism of these words, using several examples of each from the novel. Include whether or not the words influenced you at all as you read it.

(see the answer keys)

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