Private Lives 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. According to Elyot, how does he feel about Amanda?

2. What genre of play is "Private Lives?"

3. What does Elyot call Sibyl?

4. Where do Amanda and Victor plan to eat dinner?

5. Which character says "I like a man to be a man?"

Short Essay Questions

1. Why would Victor say to Amanda that she was frightening him?

2. At the start of the play, is Elyot in love with Sibyl? How can the reader tell?

3. Amanda describes her marriage to Elyot as, "two violent acids bubbling about in a nasty little matrimonial bottle." Why would she use those words and what images do they provoke?

4. What does Elyot's pastime of traveling the world imply about his character?

5. Victor and Sibyl both use nicknames for Amanda and Elyot (Mandy and Elli), though Amanda and Elyot always refer to each other by their full names. What is the significance of the use of nicknames in regards to these four characters?

6. How can the reader interpret Amanda's statement about a person's private life?

7. What is Amanda's outlook on the violence in her previous marriage that is so shocking to Victor?

8. Elyot remarks to Sibyl that, "Apart from loving me and all that, you must have plans." What does he mean by that and why would he accuse Sibyl of it?

9. What is the significance of "Solomon Isaacs?"

10. Why does Sibyl keep asking Elyot about Amanda?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

"Private Lives" is known for sharp, witty dialogue. What role does the dialogue play in this story? How does it add to the plot, humor, and character development?

Essay Topic 2

When Victor is questioning Amanda in Act III, she claims that she hates Elyot, though she is deeply attracted to him. Does Amanda truly hate Elyot? Can she hate him and have an attraction? How? Keep in mind how loving she and Elyot are to each other, including the fact that they make up and leave together at the end.

Essay Topic 3

Compare and contrast Sibyl's reaction to meeting Amanda and vice versa.

(see the answer keys)

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