Proof Test | Final 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 is Hal skeptical about Catherine's claim?

2. Why does Claire resent mathematicians?

3. What does Catherine say to Hal that causes him to leave abruptly, and without the notebook?

4. What object does Claire give to Hal before he leaves?

5. What is she paying for tuition?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is Claire worried about Catherine?

2. Describe Robert's demeanor throughout the scene.

3. Where has Catherine come from to check on Robert?

4. How does Catherine meet Hal?

5. Why is Robert so excited about working?

6. What is Robert examining in the proof?

7. Did Hal intentionally take advantage of Catherine when they slept together?

8. Does Claire believe that Catherine wrote the proof? Why or why not?

9. Why is the date in the scene particularly significant?

10. Why or why not does Catherine want to attend the University of Chicago?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

While Hal is a mathematician and a doctoral candidate, he mishandles almost his entire relationship Catherine.

1.) Describe Hal and Catherine's relationship in chronological order, starting with their first meeting and moving through the end of Act 2.

2.) Does Hal really care for Catherine, or is he only interested in her proof?

3.) Could Hal's attraction to Catherine also be tangled up with his sorrow over Robert's death?

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

Claire says that mathematician don't think: they just create catastrophes and expect other people to come in and clean them up.

1.) How is this true of Robert? Of Hal? Of Catherine?

2.) Does Claire feel she is cleaning up Hal's mess? Robert's mess?

3.) Does Claire feel that Robert should have been in professional care? How would this have changed events in the play?

(see the answer keys)

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