Quicksand and Passing 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. Helga feels she does not fit in with this community because

2. Mrs. Hayes-Rore is

3. The staging of Helga by her aunt and uncle make Helga feel like

4. The Danish word for "black" that Helga hears in town is

5. Helga gets a job in New York at

Short Essay Questions

1. What does the story imply about Mrs. Hayes-Rore's husband? In what might he have been involved? Explain your answers, quoting text.

2. Why does Helga return to Harlem? Discuss her newfound spiritual ties to the black population here. Is it the same connection she felt before? Why, or why not?

3. What exactly happens to Helga in Denmark? What is her social life like? Is she doomed to be unhappy again? Why?

4. Explain Helga's repulsed fascination with the Negro performers. Why does she return over and over to see them? Is this helping her somehow?

5. Why did Uncle Peter's wife reject Helga? Is she an unreasonable woman? Is she cruel? Explain your answers.

6. Discuss Axel Olsen's inappropriateness with Helga. What kind of person is he? Why does Helga reject him?

7. Discuss Uncle Poul's reaction to Helga's weeping. Is he a kind man? A loving uncle? Why or why not?

8. Why does Helga's lack of references hurt her job search? Why does she have no references?

9. Why does Anne begin avoiding Helga? Has something come between them? What is it?

10. Something about Anne has begun to wear on Helga. What is it? Is Helga's irritability justified? Why?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Why did Helga Crane not fit into the culture of Naxos? Larsen suggests several reasons, but one stands out above the rest. Helga is a complex character, but has some basic flaws that hinder her development. What were they, and how did they hurt her?

Essay Topic 2

What is the current level of poverty among African Americans in the American South? Choose three southern states and compare and contrast the income levels, education and population densities and racial demographics. To what can you attribute the variations among the three states?

Essay Topic 3

There are several mentions of "uplift" of the Negro race in the 1920s. Research and write about at least three organizations whose cause it was to uplift the race, what they did, and whether they still exist. Are there any of these still in existence today? If so, where are they headquartered and what is their creed or motto?

(see the answer keys)

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