Reservation Blues 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. What does Chess do at her house when they first arrive?

2. What does Thomas suggest as a name for the band?

3. What event did Thomas witness that turned him against the Christian religion?

4. What does Victor dream about with a priest?

5. What joke does Victor makes that enrages Checkers?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Thomas ask Chess about her church, what is her response and what story does he tell that starts her crying?

2. What does the guitar do about Thomas singing to Chess, and what does Chess eventually do?

3. What does Thomas do after the show at Flathead?

4. How does Lester end up with a broken nose during the game with the police?

5. How did Victor and Junior begin drinking and what is Thomas's drinking history?

6. How does the song "Reservation Blues" come about?

7. What was the mix-up with the gig in Seattle?

8. What happens to the band on the way to a venue not on an Indian Reservation and what surprises the band about the incident?

9. What does Thomas ask Chess and Checkers to do and what is their response?

10. What does Chess ask Thomas about religion and how does Thomas respond?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Characters are an important part of what makes "Reservation Blues" interesting. Discuss the following:

1. Thoroughly discuss and analyze Thomas. What are his strengths? His weaknesses? How does he contribute to the plot? Is he a sympathetic character? Is he always likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

2. Thoroughly discuss and analyze the character of Chess. What are her strengths? Her weaknesses? How does she contribute to the plot? Is she a sympathetic character? Is she ever likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

3. Thoroughly discuss and analyze the character of Junior. What are his strengths? His weaknesses? How does he contribute to the plot? Is he a sympathetic character? Is he ever likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

Essay Topic 2

Victor began drinking at an early age. Junior tried to avoid drinking because of what he witnessed with his parents' drinking, but Junior eventually succumbed to Victor's encouragement to drink. Thomas does not drink, but he has a father who is an alcoholic. Alcoholism has had a profound effect on the members of Coyote Springs, as it has with many Native Americans. Thomas, Victor, and Junior have all encountered tragedy due to alcoholism, whether it be one's own alcoholism or the excessive drinking of a relative.

1. What might be some of the reasons a person who had alcoholic parents and witnessing what alcoholism does would take up drinking. Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

2. What are some of the circumstances on a reservation that might push people to drink even knowing that it appears Native Americans cannot genetically handle alcohol. Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

3. What do you see is the difference in Thomas's personality from Victor or Junior's that would induce him to not drink even though he had an alcoholic father like Victor and Junior? Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

The narrative in Chapter 4 switches back and forth between the present and the past when Thomas' father, Samuel, played basketball with the tribal police. The incident with the police shows in many ways how some reservation residents resent any member of the tribe that succeeds. While some reservation residents engage in almost hero worship of one who excels, plenty of others seem to feel jealousy to the point of hatred.

1. Why do you think some poor people might get jealous of people from their circumstances doing well? Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

2. What do you think is the differences in the people who hero worship someone who has done well as opposed to ones who are angry or hateful towards that person? Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

3. Why do you think the police became violent when playing ball with Samuel? Use examples from your own life and the text to support your answer.

(see the answer keys)

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