Reading Lolita in Tehran, A Memoir in Books 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. Why do the students meet in Nafisi's apartment?

2. What happens to the everyday lives of Nafisi and her students as a result of the secret class?

3. Chapter 12 takes place during which season?

4. What are the biggest threats to an idealized vision of an individual or a country?

5. How does Nafisi select her students for the small study group?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Nafisi include Part 1, Chapter 12 in her memoir?

2. What is the relationship between the imaginary rain shower and the meeting of Nafisi's class?

3. Why do Mitra and the other students find the Thursday study group to be significant?

4. Why does Nafisi believe the scene where Humbert picked up Lolita at summer camp is the heart of Nabokov's novel?

5. Why do the magician and Nafisi enjoy each other's company so much?

6. What is the similarity between Lolita's past and the past of Nafisi's students?

7. In Part 1, Chapter 18, the room where the class meets becomes a character. How does Nafisi describe the room?

8. According to Vera Nabokov, what is the beauty in "Lolita" and why is it missed by critics?

9. How is the generation of Nafisi's students different from the generation of Nafisi and her peers?

10. Why does Nafisi describe the three types of women portrayed in "A Thousand and One Nights"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Nafisi presents several male students as passionate about the values of the Islamist Republic of Iran. In what ways are Mr. Bahri, Mr. Nyazi, and Mr. Ghomi similar? In what ways are they different? Which one of those students is portrayed as being in closest agreement with the regime? What evidence supports your choice?

Essay Topic 2

Nafisi addresses disappearance and absence as a major theme in the book. Write an essay that examines the issues of disappearance and absence in the novels Nafisi teaches, in the lives of her students, and in Nafisi's own life, both personally and professionally.

Essay Topic 3

Nafisi opens the book by asking the reader to imagine the secret class. She ends the book by wondering if she imagined the magician. Throughout the memoir, she mentions imagination in connection to the Iranian regime, to the authors of the fictional novels she teaches, and in the lives of herself and her students. What is the role of imagination in "Reading Lolita in Tehran"? How do each of those characters (the regime, the authors, Nafisi, her students) view imagination?

(see the answer keys)

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