Rabelais and His World Test | Mid-Book Test - Easy

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This test consists of 15 multiple choice questions and 5 short answer questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. Bakhtin asserts that beatings, death, feasting, and merrymaking are all integral parts of:
(a) The methods of marketplace vendors in overpricing their goods.
(b) Rabelais' view of the proper treatment of foreigners and peasants.
(c) The Renaissance notion that all which is already established is perfect.
(d) The Renaissance system of images that is perpetually regenerative and never decaying.

2. What are the "Catchpoles" of which Rabelais writes?
(a) Animals sent into the wild as sacrifices.
(b) Materials used to build large meeting-houses.
(c) Vegetables which require being strung to a pole in order to grow.
(d) People who earn money by allowing others to beat them.

3. In Rabelais' time, why was the meaning of debasement often ambivalent?
(a) Because the head is quite separate from all the other parts of the body, spiritually and materially.
(b) Because the debased person may choose to deflect the debasement.
(c) Because the person saying the insult never means it seriously.
(d) Because the decaying or excretory organs are closely located to the regenerative genital organs.

4. What are the targets of the abusive language in Rabelais' prologue to the Third Book?
(a) Representatives of old, hypocritical, serious Medieval philosophy.
(b) Average townsfolk who have imbibed too much wine.
(c) Members of the aristocracy whose political ideals are not in keeping with Rabelais' ideals.
(d) Foreign travelers who have offended the traditions of Carnival.

5. Clowns and fools are:
(a) Prisoners forced to entertain others.
(b) Everyday representatives of the folk and of Carnival.
(c) Present only at large fairs or gatherings.
(d) Restricted to entertaining the royal court.

6. According to Bakhtin's semiotic understanding, what irony is inherent within the creative power of language?
(a) Language does not actually express anything.
(b) The individual expresses him- or herself only through the words of others.
(c) No word can actually ever be defined.
(d) All languages are one.

7. What was the most prevalent medium of the culture of the common folk in the Renaissance?
(a) The spoken word.
(b) Semaphore signals.
(c) Pantomime.
(d) Printed newspapers.

8. The purpose of "travesty" in folk festivals was to:
(a) Reassert traditional definitions of social and spiritual life.
(b) Indicate the importance of travel to an individual's self-development.
(c) Call upon something serious and make it amusing.
(d) Irreversibly denigrate everything it could.

9. Curses in Renaissance folk culture tended to focus most closely upon the victim's:
(a) Family.
(b) Mind.
(c) Body.
(d) Spirit.

10. During Bakhtin's time, what genre was being closely defined by the Soviet government?
(a) The lyric.
(b) The novel.
(c) The biography.
(d) The epic poem.

11. Carnival allowed:
(a) The mixing of real and unreal, fantasy and fact.
(b) The endurance of the propriety expected of all social classes.
(c) The upper class to oppress relentlessly the lower class.
(d) The peasants to sell their crops without paying taxes.

12. Mikhail Bakhtin is:
(a) A vocal Eastern Orthodox cleric.
(b) A fictional figure created to be the mouthpiece of an anonymous author.
(c) The most famous Russian writer ever.
(d) A somewhat mysterious but increasingly interesting literary figure.

13. Bakhtin considers "thrashing" ambivalent, rather than strictly negative, because:
(a) The one who is thrashed explicitly agrees to the act.
(b) The act of thrashing is done to punish the individual.
(c) The one who is thrashed is also decorated and celebrated.
(d) The act of thrashing is done out of kindness.

14. What were "street cries"?
(a) The warnings people yell when they throw the contents of their chamber pot out the window.
(b) The sobs of orphans who live on the street.
(c) The shouted, versified advertisements of market vendors.
(d) The calls of the city bellringer telling the time.

15. What does Bakhtin find inadequate in Veselovsky's metaphor of Rabelais as a village boy?
(a) Veselovsky's image is too young at heart, for Rabelais wrote only with an old, tired voice.
(b) Veselovsky's image excludes the seriousness of the boy as a budding scholar.
(c) Veselovsky's image seems too urban for Rabelais, who only wrote about the countryside.
(d) Veselovsky's image is cynical, but Rabelais actually celebrates regenerative laughter.

Short Answer Questions

1. Why does Friar John beat thousands of men in his abbey?

2. What does Bakhtin consider the most indispensable element of folk culture?

3. In Rabelais' works, some causes of diseases associated with the material body lower stratum are:

4. How does the Lord of Basche contrive to bring Catchpoles to his castle?

5. What does Bakhtin argue is the role of dialogue?

(see the answer keys)

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