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. How does the prologue of _Pantagruel_ demonstrate the connection between literature and the marketplace?
(a) It begins with a detailed description of the author's hometown marketplace.
(b) It simultaneously advertises itself and praises the public.
(c) It offers a pricey alternative to illiteracy.
(d) It exhorts its readers to record in writing their own experiences of fairs and of Carnival.

2. How is the Rabelaisian use of tripe an excellent example of grotesque realism?
(a) It is the epitome of disgusting.
(b) It combines fantasy with reality in one type of cuisine.
(c) It merges the positive and negative, or upper and lower, spheres of the body.
(d) It is a drug which offers the user a glimpse of a higher plane of existence.

3. What was the reception of Rabelais' work in the eighteenth century?
(a) Other writers used his topics as a jumping-off point for their own works.
(b) Other writers strove to emulate his style.
(c) His work was viewed as a revival of Classical writing.
(d) His work was viewed as unintelligible and barbaric.

4. In the folklore and grotesque realism of Rabelais' works, excrement represents bodies and matter that are:
(a) Generally revered.
(b) Mostly comic.
(c) Frightening and terrible.
(d) One with the earth.

5. Comic rituals in Medieval and Renaissance Europe were:
(a) All that which linked the living to the dead.
(b) Necessary to mercantile transactions.
(c) Freed of the trappings of religious dogma and mysticism.
(d) Taboo in all settings but the royal court.

6. Why did Renaissance humanists attempt to suppress oaths and profanities?
(a) They viewed such language as predominantly atheistic.
(b) They were shocked to hear the Lord's name taken in vain.
(c) They saw such language as relics of the superstitious Middle Ages.
(d) They felt that if one could not say something nice, one should say nothing at all.

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

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

9. What in particular forms the basic elements of Rabelais' novel _Gargantua_?
(a) Classical myths.
(b) Autobiographical observations of Rabelais' own life.
(c) Predictions of the future.
(d) Historical allusions.

10. To what does Bakhtin compare the various cries of Paris?
(a) A crowded kitchen.
(b) A sobbing child.
(c) A roaring storm.
(d) A howling wolf.

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

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

13. Which answer best describes "grotesque realism"?
(a) The tone of the writing is always dark, Gothic, and depressing.
(b) The author's focus must be on bodily gore, blood, death, and dying.
(c) The writing must strive to be as mathematically or geometrically accurate as possible in its descriptions.
(d) The bodily element is universal, celebratory, positive, and exaggerated.

14. Why, according to Bakhtin, does Rabelais treat excrement ambivalently?
(a) Because it is evidence of humankind's presence on the earth.
(b) Because it is intermediate between earth and body.
(c) Because its purpose was a mystery in the Renaissance.
(d) Because it exclusively connotes badness or evil.

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

Short Answer Questions

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

2. Bakhtin associates Friar John's beating of the men with:

3. What event that Rabelais relates does he assert is the origin of the name of the city of Paris?

4. Why was Rabelais linked so closely to the Lyon fairs?

5. With what portion of the body is grotesque debasement most concerned?

(see the answer keys)

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