Oedipus the King 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 Creon do initially when he hears Oedipus charged him with causing Teiresias to lie?

2. Why does Jocasta come to pray to Apollo?

3. What does Creon deny that he has a desire to do?

4. Does the shepherd identify the messenger as someone he's met?

5. Who accused Oedipus of not being his father's real son?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the chorus' attitude toward Oedipus, in his conflict with Creon?

2. What does Jocasta's description of the place where Laius was killed mean to Oedipus?

3. What did the oracle at Delphi tell Oedipus about his parentage?

4. How does the chorus react to Creon's self defense?

5. Why does Oedipus question how his father could love him?

6. What prophecy does Jocasta tell Oedipus about?

7. After Jocasta exits, when Oedipus is intent on finding out his true identity, how does the chorus feel about Oedipus' search?

8. What main news does the messenger from Corinth bring?

9. What does the old shepherd say was his motive in giving the infant to the messenger, when they were both shepherds together?

10. What favor did Jocasta do for the person who told her about Laius' death?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the role of women in the play.

1) What is Jocasta's role as queen? How do the people seem to treat Jocasta?

2) Creon says that Jocasta and Oedipus rule as equals. Is this true? How does Oedipus treat Jocasta?

2) Why does Oedipus fear for his daughters more than his sons at the end of the play? What does this say about the treatment of men and women in the society?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss dramatic irony in OEDIPUS THE KING.

1) How does the fact that the audience knows the story of Oedipus affect the way the writer tells the story? How could the story be told differently, if the audience were unfamiliar with it?

2) How does dramatic irony affect the audience's perception of Oedipus? Is the audience more or less sympathetic toward Oedipus? Why or why not? How does the audience perceive Oedipus' quarrels with Teiresias and Creon?

3) How does dramatic irony affect the audience's perception of Jocasta?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss denial in Oedipus.

1) When and how much does Jocasta know about Oedipus' background and crimes? Does Jocasta realize what is going on, at least on some level, and hide it from herself? What characteristics does she have that might make this plausible?

2) When and how much does Oedipus know about his own background and crimes? Is Oedipus in denial of his crimes at all?

3) Does the chorus seem to have any inkling of the truth? Is it possible that the people of the town could be in denial? Support your reasoning with evidence from the text.

(see the answer keys)

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