Rabelais and His World 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. The core images of the prologue of _Gargantua_ are:

2. During the "feast of fools" and the "feast of the ass," laughter:

3. How, according to Bakhtin, does the current Russian literary criticism approach Rabelais' works?

4. The vocabulary of the prologue of _Gargantua_ is:

5. What were "street cries"?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the marketplace become an indicator of folk culture in general?

2. What was the effect of the suspension of social hierarchies during Carnival?

3. Describe the Renaissance student writings.

4. What does Bakhtin mean when he argues that laughter affirms the people's unofficial truth?

5. What was the general perception of laughter in the Renaissance?

6. What was Bakhtin's relationship with the Russian Union of Writers?

7. Describe two episodes of beatings or injury are specifically centered around the theme of feasting.

8. What are the "cris de Paris," or "street cries"?

9. What do Rabelais' long lists of names and epithets signify?

10. What is important about the figure of the physician in Rabelais' novel?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What roles do games play in Rabelais' novel and in the Renaissance? Discuss how games and gaming fulfill an "unofficial" social role as opposed to an "official" one. What images, traditions, and symbols does Bakhtin associate them with? How are games representative of folk culture? How did games and gaming change after the Renaissance?

Essay Topic 2

What connections do Bakhtin and the authors of the Foreword and the Prologue draw between Bakhtin and Rabelais? How were their lives and times similar? What common themes are evident in their writing? In which important ways do they differ?

Essay Topic 3

Examine the structure, the presence, and the purpose of the Foreword and the Prologue. What do they offer to the reader? What is the purpose of a foreword or a prologue--what is the function of writing an introduction to someone else's book? Can, or do, such prefatory remarks influence the reader's experience of the text? Can reading ever be a "pure" activity with no outside influence of opinion?

(see the answer keys)

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