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. Why does Claire want Catherine to come to New York?

2. What time of day does Catherine's conversation with Robert occur?

3. Why is Claire selling the house?

4. What does Claire make Catherine for breakfast?

5. Where does Catherine tell Claire to look for proof that Hal is real?

Short Essay Questions

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

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

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

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

5. Why does Hal think his papers get turned down for publication?

6. How does Hal describe the mathematicians at his conferences?

7. Why is Hal sensitive about getting older?

8. When did Hal and Catherine first meet?

9. What does Claire plan to do with the house?

10. Why has Hal come to the house?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What are Catherine's arguments that she wrote the proof? What are Claire's arguments that she did not write the proof? Why is Hal skeptical? What is Catherine's explanation for her advanced understand of mathematics? At the climax of Act 1, Catherine tries to destroy the proof, though it is of extreme mathematical importance and she has poured her heart and soul into it. Why, at that point, is her only option to destroy it? Why does Claire stop her?

Essay Topic 2

Robert and Catherine have a very unique father/daughter relationship.

1.) Describe why their relationship is different from most. Are there any role reversals?

2.) Do Claire and Robert share a similar bond, or are Catherine and Robert two peas in a pod?

3.) They each have very specific fears they voice in the play. What are these fears? How do they differ? How are they similar?

Essay Topic 3

Compare and contract Catherine and Claire. Though they are sisters, they have very different personalities.

1.) How did Claire want Robert's illness handled? How did Catherine want it handled?

2.) What pressure does Claire feel in regards to her family? What pressure does Catherine feel?

3.) How and why does Claire's intervention in her life offend Catherine?

(see the answer keys)

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