Ordinary People 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 do Cal and Conrad buy in chapter 13?

2. What is Conrad's reaction to hearing his classmates taunt him?

3. What is Cal's occupation?

4. What does Beth complain about in chapter 6?

5. How does Conrad feel about Cal's Christmas gift?

Short Essay Questions

1. How was attention called to Conrad's issues before he went to the mental hospital?

2. Describe the new goals that Conrad sets for himself.

3. Describe Beth's attitude toward Cal and Conrad in chapter 6.

4. What does Conrad prove by making an appointment with Dr. Berger?

5. What makes Cal wonder why Conrad would ever want to kill himself?

6. Why does Cal want to see Dr. Berger in chapter 17?

7. The morning that the novel starts, what things does Conrad wonder?

8. Why doesn't Conrad first reveal that he had a brother to Dr. Berger?

9. Looking at Beth's perfectionist personality, why does Conrad upset her so much?

10. Describe Conrad's meeting with Karen.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

How is the title "Ordinary People" relevant to the novel's content? Why do you think the novel is called "Ordinary People"?

Essay Topic 2

Beth is a perfectionist, and Conrad is afraid to make mistakes. Describe the ways in which perfection is a major theme in the novel. Which characters strive for perfection? How does it affect their life and character development?

Essay Topic 3

Analyze the development of the three main characters: Conrad, Beth, and Cal. Compare and contrast each character from the novel's introduction to the epilogue. What changes? What do they learn?

(see the answer keys)

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