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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 does the etymology of Gargantua's name suggest his name means?
2. According to Bakhtin, Carnival was the true symbol and incarnation of:
3. How does Friar John interpret the riddle he and Gargantua hear?
4. What does Bakhtin assert is evident in Rabelais' plan for Pantagruel's journey?
5. Where did Rabelais collect most of his rich vocabulary?
Short Essay Questions
1. How does Rabelais use the element of popular speech known as "coq-à-l'âne"?
2. Why are eating and drinking two of the most important manifestations of the grotesque body?
3. How did games and gaming change after the Renaissance?
4. How do the Medieval and Renaissance pictures of the cosmos differ?
5. Why does the logic of the grotesque ignore the closed surfaces of the body?
6. What is the significance of Friar John's description of the monastery belfry as "fecund"?
7. How is "folly" ambivalent?
8. Briefly describe the two opposing lines of thought in the "querelle des femmes."
9. Discuss the significance of Gargantua's birth.
10. Describe the figure of "Gros Guillaume" and his significance to Rabelais' novel.
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
Discuss the "querelle des femmes" and Rabelais' perspective on it. How does Rabelais' novel portray women and femininity? Is Bakhtin's explanation of Rabelais' perspective on the querelle des femmes problematic in any way? Feel free to address this issue using terms of modern feminist theory.
Essay Topic 2
How does Rabelais use myth in his work? What types of myth does he draw from (classical, popular, spiritual, etc.)? How are allusions to mythology a part of carnivalesque culture? Cite at least three specific examples of identifiable myths which Rabelais alludes to, alters, parodies, travesties, or repeats.
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.
This section contains 1,015 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)