The Piano Lesson Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. After the story about Boy Charles' death, what does the family hear Maretha doing at the end of the first act?

2. How does Sutter kill Boy Charles?

3. What was Wining Boy's occupation while he was married?

4. Which of the following characters is NOT involved in stealing the piano from the Sutter home?

5. What sound is heard by the characters who attempt to move the piano?

Short Essay Questions

1. What connection does Doaker make between travel and happiness?

2. What religious rationalization does Boy WIllie have for the revenge he is seeking against the Sutter family?

3. What happens when Berniece threatens Boy Willie with the gun?

4. What story does Boy Willie tell his sister about the dog he had as a child?

5. How do Boy Willie and Lymon end up in Pittsburgh?

6. What does Boy Willie believe about the laws of the white man?

7. What happens between Boy Willie and Grace once they left to return to her apartment?

8. What type of encounter does Boy Willie explain that he has had with the piano's potential buyer on his way home from Grace's?

9. What happens when Boy Willie and Lymon attempt to move the piano for its potential buyer?

10. How did Sutter react to the disappearance of his prized piano?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

The text of "The Piano Lesson" is presented as a play rather than straight prose. What reasons do you think August Wilson had to present his story this way? What was gained in the form of stage writing? What was lost?

Essay Topic 2

The piano itself is arguably the strongest symbol in the entire play. Explain the history of the piano and briefly discuss why the physical structure of the piano can be seen as a symbol within the Charles family.

Essay Topic 3

Storytelling proves to be one of the most powerful elements of information transfer throughout the play. Choose one story that was told during the course of the play, explain the story's significance, and discuss how this story is an example of the importance of storytelling in the Charles family culture.

(see the answer keys)

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