Proof Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

David Auburn
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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. How did Hal and Catherine meet four years ago?

2. What does Hal discover in the notebook?

3. What name does Claire call Catherine by?

4. What is Hal carrying when he enters?

5. Who interrupts Catherine and Robert's conversation?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe the general mood at the house after Robert's funeral.

2. Why does Catherine demand to see Hal's backpack? Does she find anything?

3. Why is Hal insistent on going through all of Robert's notebooks?

4. Why is Hal's entrance at the end of the scene helpful for Catherine?

5. Describe Hal's mood the morning after he and Catherine sleep together.

6. What is Hal's song Imaginary Number?

7. Why is it strange that Catherine and Robert are speaking in the beginning of the first scene?

8. Describe Catherine's reaction when she discovers the notebook.

9. Robert was a graphomaniac. What does that mean?

10. Who did Claire want to care for Robert during his illness, and who actually cared for him?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Hal admits at the end of Act 2 not only that the proof is correct, but that he was wrong and should have believe Catherine the first time. How does this admission vindicate her? She proceeds not to explicitly forgive him, but does agree to sit down and explain the proof. Is this perhaps the first time she has ever had the opportunity to talk to anyone about her work? What fear does she reveal to Hal? What are the implications for the future as she begins to explain the proof to Hal?

Essay Topic 2

Catherine is angry and upset when Hal steals the notebook. She goes so far as to call the police, though he confesses as soon as she finds it and claims he wanted to give it back to her as a gift.

1.) Though he may have been planning to give it back, Hal attempted to steal on of her late father's possessions. Does Catherine overreact in this situation?

2.) What does Catherine think he may be trying to do with the information in the notebook?

Essay Topic 3

What role does time have in the play? How does the playwright use time loosely to share vital information about the characters and plot? Discuss the significance of Catherine's birthday. When does the date appear in the play? How many times?

(see the answer keys)

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