Rabbit, Run 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. What type of flower garden does Eccles secure Harry a job tending?

2. To what does Mrs. Smith twice compare the Bianchi that she and her husband brought in from New York?

3. During what Catholic holy day does this section of reading take place?

4. What television show do Janis and Harry watch?

5. On the way to meet their girls, to what animal does Tothero compare women?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Harry take off his shoes on his walk up Mt. Judge?

2. Describe Janice Angstrom.

3. How is Harry and Lucy's first meeting dangerous?

4. How is Janice's attitude toward Rabbit conflicted at this point?

5. Why does Rabbit leave his car at Janice's apartment?

6. How is Harry greeted at the hospital?

7. Why do Tothero and Margaret leave dinner early?

8. How does Ruth make fun of Harry regarding Chinese food?

9. How does Harry find out that his child has died?

10. What excuse does Janice make to her father regarding Harry?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Updike's novel is the story of a man unable to commit to any way of life for fear that a better option exists somewhere else. Write an essay about this fear, focusing on three of Rabbit's frantic flights:

Part 1) At the beginning of the novel, Rabbit abruptly abandons his family to drive south. What is he hoping to find on this journey? Why does it fail? How does Rabbit's interaction with a gas station attendant portend this failure?

Part 2) Why does Rabbit decide to leave Ruth? What does he think he leaves behind with this abandonment? What does he leave behind in reality?

Part 3) The final pages of Rabbit, Run contain a frantic flight in all directions for the protagonist. What is he trying to escape? How do neither of his two homes contain this goal? Where is Rabbit left at the end of the novel?

Essay Topic 2

Marty Tothero seems like a cautionary figure when the prodigal Harry shows up at the Sunshine Athletic Association. He is separated from his wife, living in a storage closet, and occasionally attached to a likely prostitute. Write an essay about Tothero and Harry as kindred souls. What warnings does Tothero make to Harry? How does Harry feel like Tothero in his second date with Ruth and Margaret? Why does Harry always want to get away from Tothero?

Essay Topic 3

Harry Angstrom feels terrorized by both his parents and his in-laws. They, in turn, are sharply and painfully divided in their opinions to of his actions. Write an essay regarding the parents in RABBIT, RUN, dividing them into those that fiercely support Harry and those that grow to revile him. Why do some stick by him? What does he mean to these people?

(see the answer keys)

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