The Natural 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 American tendency does Malamud say The Judge and Gus take advantage of?

2. Who is Sam Simpson?

3. What does the author tell us about Roy's declaration to become the best ball player ever?

4. What will it take for Roy to be relieved from his suffering?

5. What mistake did Pop make that Red tells Roy about?

Short Essay Questions

1. Discuss Memo's reaction to Roy and how is changed over the course of this chapter (Chapter 4).

2. What happens to the Knights when the first-place Pirates come to town to play against them?

3. When a man comes to Roy and asks him to hit a home run for his sick child, what is Roy's reaction and what does he tell the man?

4. Sam is on the scene as a character for a very short time. What purpose does he serve as a character?

5. When Roy is teased about his bat being white, he makes the comment that it is the bat's true color. What does the color white indicate, and how does this apply to Roy's bat?

6. What happens when Roy goes to visit Memo in her hotel room and finds Gus there?

7. What problem does Pop Fisher have with his pitcher, Fowler, and how does that affect the games?

8. What two things did Sam do that showed how much he cared for Roy?

9. Explain the term "fair weather fan" and how the term relates to the novel.

10. What does Roy do in the night after they lose the pennant game?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss The Natural as a novel of magical realism. Magical realism is when a realistic novel contains issues that are stranger than life, unreal, or appearing magical. What purpose do instances of magical realism appear to serve in this novel? Give examples from the novel.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss how the unfolding of Roy's character throughout the novel is related to the seasonal aspects of the vegetative myths from Arthurian tales.

Essay Topic 3

Why does Roy reject the locker-room lecture and hypnotism of Doc Knobb? How do the other Knights regard Doc Knobb? Give examples from the text to defend your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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