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. When the intruders enter Nafisi's house, what happens?

2. Why does Nafisi see a parallel between Humbert and contemporary Iranian society?

3. The desire for what intangible object drives Nafisi's students?

4. According to Nafisi, how is the character of Lolita like Nafisi's students?

5. Why does Nafisi's apartment lack matching furniture and fancy window dressings?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the Iranian regime expect women to behave on the streets of Tehran?

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

3. What happens to disrupt the class discussion in Chapter 17?

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

5. In Chapter 2, why does Nafisi describe the first meeting of the study group in present tense instead of past tense?

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

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

8. What factors cause Nafisi to resign from her position at the university?

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

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Nafisi opens and closes the book with images and accounts of the students in her secret class. This creates a satisfying conclusion and cyclic treatment in the book. What other examples of cyclic treatment are evident in the book? Choose 2 examples and write an essay illustrating how Nafisi uses cyclic treatment throughout the book.

Essay Topic 2

"Reading Lolita in Tehran" is divided into four parts, and each part centers around a novel. The book's title emphasizes only one novel, "Lolita." "Lolita" is the emphasis for the first section of the book. Why do you think that "Lolita" was mentioned in the book title instead of the other novels discussed? Was this a good choice? If not, which of the other novels would have been more suitable and why?

Essay Topic 3

In "Reading Lolita in Tehran," the novels and their authors take on the role of characters, contributing to the storyline, advancing the plot, and interacting with the other characters (Nafisi and her students). Choose one of the major novels ("Lolita," "The Great Gatsby") or one of the major authors (James, Austen) and describe how Nafisi treats the book or writer as a character in the memoir.

(see the answer keys)

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