Orpheus Descending 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 does Lady get from the cash drawer when she sees Val in the store in Act 1 Scene 2?

2. What was "the mistake" Lady's father made that caused the vineyard to be burned?

3. What does Carol tell Val that she is?

4. What does Val wear?

5. What does Val say he needs to fix his buckle?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Carol describe herself to Val?

2. Why does Val say that Jim Crow killed Bessie Smith?

3. What conversation does Lady have with the Nurse about Jabe's illness in Act 3 Scene 3?

4. What story does Beulah tell about Lady's father?

5. Why did the woman call to complain about Val? What really happened?

6. What does Carol say you do after "jooking?"

7. What does Lady tell David in Act 2? How does he react?

8. Who is Vee? How has she met Val?

9. Describe the character of Uncle Pleasant. What does he look like? What does he say when he enters in Act 1?

10. Explain Vee's feelings about painting.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the component of racism in Orpheus Descending. How does it play a role in the action of the play? How does the element of race lend in defining certain characters?

Essay Topic 2

Describe the character of Val and explain what characteristics he has which make him a classical Tragic Hero. Define Tragic Hero in your answer.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss how Orpheus Descending retells the legend of the demigod Orpheus. What similarities do the stories share? How do they differ?

(see the answer keys)

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