Powers of Horror: An Essay on Abjection 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. Kristeva says purity is usually associated with conducting what type of affairs in certain ways?

2. Since the boy is forced to repress his desire for the "maternal body" at a young age, Kristeva says he has not yet understood the situation in what way?

3. Who was the first person to have specified that the plane of abjection is that of the subject/object relationship?

4. A theme Kristeva points out in Chapter 3 is that what is inside the margin is good, and whatever is outside of the margin is what?

5. Kristeva says that the ritualization of defilement and purification is also responsible for creating inequality between whom?

Short Essay Questions

1. What reason does Kristeva give for why women in the Jewish faith are seen as impure after having children?

2. How does Kristeva say Christianity uses separation and division?

3. How does Kristeva say the Freudian model of the Oedipal triangle flawed?

4. What is the correlation Kristeva presents between the importance of social status in sexual relationships and the equality between the sexes?

5. What two ways of relating to the abject does Kristeva says Dostoevsky presents in "The Possessed"?

6. How does social status play a role in purity customs in India?

7. What does Kristeva say about how the New Testament contradicts the traditional Christian thoughts about the origin of sin?

8. According to class theory, how are the drives of an individual divided?

9. What does Kristeva say is the most plausible interpretation of the laws regarding ritual impurity in the Old Testament?

10. How does Kristeva say incest relates to the abject?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the role of Sigmund Freud in the book. How does Kristeva make use of his ideas? How do her ideas relate to his? How are they different? Describe two instances where she explains his view on a subject and expands upon it.

Essay Topic 2

Explore Celine's use of interesting stylistic choices in his writing. What are a few of the stylistic choices Kristeva points out? Why does she link his interesting use of language to the abject? What does Kristeva believe is Celine's goal with language? How can this goal be linked back to the abject?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the concept of the "zero-state" in young children. What does Kristeva mean when she talks about the zero state? What happens when a child starts to come out of the zero state? What are some of the fears and desires that a young, pre-cognitive child might have? How do the fears and desires sync up with Freud's model of the Oedipal triangle? How do they go against it?

(see the answer keys)

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