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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. What does Higgins offer to do for Liza at the end of the play?
2. Why is Pickering afraid at the party?
3. What shocking thing does Liza tell her listeners at the social visit with the Eynsford Hills in Act 3?
4. Where is Liza at the beginning of Act 5?
5. What is Mrs. Higgins concerned about after meeting Liza at the social visit in Act 3?
Short Essay Questions
1. What does Liza ultimately think of the party and of her success at the end of Act 3?
2. Describe Mrs. Higgins and her relationship with her son.
3. What does Pickering think about the evening? How do his feelings differ from Higgins's? How does he succeed in hurting Liza as well?
4. What type of job does Liza propose to do in the final act? Why might she be better at this job than Higgins?
5. Why is Liza so upset in Act 4? What does she want to know?
6. What do Neppomuck and the ambassador's wife conclude about Liza? What does it suggest about class differences and about high society that Liza is so easily able to fool everyone at the party?
7. What does Higgins conclude about the evening and about their joint project at the beginning of Act 4? What does he say that hurts Liza's feelings?
8. Why doesn't Higgins want Liza to fetch his slippers for him and perform other like tasks?
9. Does Higgins really not care about Liza? How can you tell? What comments and reactions on Higgins's part show that he is growing fond of Eliza?
10. How does Freddy feel about Liza and what does he want from her? How is he different from Higgins?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
Critics of Shaw often comment that the servants in his plays have better sense than their masters. Write an essay in which you examine the role of Mrs. Pearce in the play, looking in particular at the way she argues with Higgins in Act 2 over what should be done with Liza. Does Mrs. Pearce have better sense than Higgins? Explain, using examples from the play.
Essay Topic 2
Write an essay examining the theme of manners in Pygmalion.
Part 1) Evaluate Higgins's statement from Act 5, "The secret is not having good manners or bad manners or any other particular sort of manners, but having the same manner for all human souls: in short, behaving as if you were in Heaven, where there are no third-class carriages, and one soul is as good as another." What does he mean by this? Do you agree with him?
Part 2) Do you think Shaw agrees with him on the subject of manners? For instance, is there something honest about the rude way Higgins behaves, and something hypocritical about the "polite" manners of other people in the play?
Part 3) Which characters in the play behave the same to everyone, and which characters treat people differently depending on the class they belong to? Explain.
Essay Topic 3
Write an essay examining satire in Pygmalion. Satire is a humorous writing that exposes the foolishness of certain customs, behaviors, and institutions of society. What conventional beliefs and attitudes of the English middle class does Shaw satirize? Examine in particular:
--The speeches of Alfred Doolittle about middle-class morality and marriage.
--The arrogance of Higgins, and what his mother and Mrs. Pearce think of him.
--Neppomuck's foolish pomposities at the Embassy party.
--The characters of the snobbish Clara and her mother Mrs. Eynsford Hill, who clings to her past.
This section contains 1,129 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)