Rabelais and His World Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Bakhtin defines Rabelais' giants as:

2. According to Bakhtin, how did Rabelais invent many of the locales and characters in his novel?

3. What is the theme of "cuckoldry"?

4. From what does Panurge suggest the protective walls of Paris be built?

5. In the example Schneegans offers, what does Rabelais' Friar John assert makes women fertile?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Describe the relationship between praise and abuse. Use examples of this theme from what Bakhtin identifies as billingsgate and marketplace language and from popular-festive forms in Chapters 2 and 3. How were praise and abuse part of the tradition of "unofficial" language, and specifically how did they oppose "official" language? Are there elements of the grotesque in praise and abuse?

Essay Topic 2

Explore Bakhtin's study of language in Rabelais. What is "vernacular" or "colloquial" language? How is it different from "official" languages, like that of the Church or of the monarchy? How is verbal communication different from written communication, and who or what does each type of communication serve? How does Rabelais keep his language lively and never dull? How does Rabelais transform names, nicknames, proper nouns, and all other forms of speech?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the nature of Medieval and Renaissance popular dramatic forms. On what occasions were performances held? What genre were these performances, and what was their common subject matter? What does Bakhtin mean when he asserts that such performances had no "footlights"? Citing examples from the text, explore the theme of universalism in these dramas.

(see the answer keys)

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