Ourika: An English Translation Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Claire de Duras
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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. Fowles' "affair" with Ourika began ____ years after visiting the book store.

2. Fowles' novel fit into which literary genre?

3. What word is used to describe Ourika's identity?

4. Who was the Emperor at that time?

5. What word is used to describe the woman's eyes?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who was sent to visit Ourika in a convent outside Paris? What was the doctor's background?

2. What about Ourika's presence surprises the doctor? What is Ourika's reasoning for her illness?

3. How was Fowles inspired by Ourika? What came from that inspiration?

4. What type of struggle did Claire have when deciding to publish her work for the first time?

5. Who is Joan DeJean? What is her position at the University of Pennsylvania?

6. What does Duras' depiction of Ourika tend to continue to be important regarding race and feminism?

7. What is the basic premise of Claire de Duras' "Ourika?"

8. What does Ourika claim is her problem? What does the doctor notice about Ourika's condition? What is the doctor's advice?

9. What happened to Ourika when she left Senegal? Who took care of her?

10. Describe the scene the doctor sees when he arrives at the convent. What has caused the state of the convent's disrepair?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Explain Ourika's decision to become a nun. What event spawned the decision? What steps needed to be taken in the enrollment? What was the opinion of the priest regarding Ourika's decision to become a nun? How did Mme. de B. react? Did the decision help or hinder Ourika in her life's work? How did it affect Ourika? Was it a wise choice? What were Ourika's other options?

Essay Topic 2

In the introductory section of the book, it is said that Ourika is much different from most protagonists in literature. Is this true? If so, how? What makes Ourika different? Is that comment true of French literature or literature in general? What might have made Ourika's situation more common or appropriate for a typical protagonist? How might you portray Ourika in a more contemporary light?

Essay Topic 3

Ourika's mother died when the girl was very small. She was taken from Senegal by Chevalier de B., a Frenchman, and returned to France to be raised by Mme. de B. Discuss the rescue from Senegal, Ourika's situation and relationship to Chevalier de B. Discuss why the Chevalier took Ourika and his intentions. Also discuss any future involvement with the chevalier.

(see the answer keys)

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