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. Margaret Creighton is

2. The husband of Mrs. Hayes-Rore died

3. Helga tells Olsen that some day

4. Helga could never marry

5. Once again, Helga realizes that

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the point of Larsen's description of Helga's response to the music at the club? What does the jungle animal description prove? Is this a racist passage?

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

3. Discuss the reasons for Helga's newfound happiness with her life in New York. What is it that pleases her in these new surroudings? Why does she feel better here than in Chicago?

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

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

6. What is Anne's problem with Audrey Denny? Does her hate toward Audrey make any sense? Why or why not?

7. To what do you suppose Helga is attracted in Dr. Anderson? (Hint: Up until now, the author repeatedly mentions a certain aspect of him.)

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

9. Discuss Helga's newly emerging feelings about the black population around her in New York. What might this mean about Helga?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Who made up high society in the black population in New York in the 1920s? What did these people do for a living? From where did their money come? Focus on three examples of historical figures and discuss their occupations and lifestyles.

Essay Topic 2

How is Larsen's own attitude toward black women's sexuality revealed, both in Quicksand and Passing? Was Larsen a prude? Was she concerned about the stereotyping of black women? If so, how does she demonstrate her attitudes in these stories?

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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