Hunger of Memory: The Education of Richard Rodriguez Test | Final 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. Where does Rodriguez feel comfortable? Why?

2. How does Rodriguez describe the 1960s student?

3. What has happened to Rodriguez's classmate who applied for the same type of teaching jobs?

4. What does Rodriguez have to do if he is going to write this book?

5. What comment from a professor makes Rodriguez rethink his use of the label "minority student"?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Rodriguez decide to do about a job?

2. How do Rodriguez's ideas about dark skin change as he grows up? Give specific examples.

3. How do Rodriguez's ideas about religion change as he grows up? How does his practice of religion change?

4. How would Rodriguez change affirmative action? What examples does he offer to support his suggestion?

5. How does Rodriguez use the label "minority student"? How does he feel about it? Give specific reasons why he feels that way.

6. What does Rodriguez think about the Civil Rights Movement?

7. Now that he is older, how do people respond to Rodriguez's skin color?

8. How does Rodriguez overcome his attitudes about dark skin? Give two specific examples.

9. How does Rodriguez describe his mother's interaction with the public world? Give specific examples.

10. As a child, what does Rodriguez learn about dark skin?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Rodriguez clearly sees books as something powerful and potentially dangerous. Early on in the book, Rodriguez describes himself as being afraid to learn to read because he was aware of the power of books. Later, he describes his mother asking him what was in all those books and why he needed to read all of them. At the end of the book, he describes his nephew, who is reading, as someone who may cause trouble.

Part One: What has happened in his life to lead him to that conclusion? Give specific examples.

Part Two: Do you think other people in the book would agree with his conclusion? Why or why not? Give specific examples.

Essay Topic 2

Rodriguez claims that it is his education that made him successful. That is the reason he is writing this history of his education.

Part One: Find examples that prove his point. How is the person he is today a result of getting a good education?

Part Two: Find examples that disprove his point. What other advantages does he have (for example, where he lives, people he knows, personal characteristics) that could have led him to be successful even without a great education?

Part Three: Decide for yourself -- did Rodriguez's education make him successful? Explain your reasoning.

Essay Topic 3

Rodriguez's attitude about complexion was affected by the "Black is Beautiful" movement. This movement preached that people should accept themselves for who they are rather than trying to match a specific idealized image. At that time, the idealized image was inevitably the image of a white person, which made it difficult for non-whites to see themselves as beautiful.

Part One: What was Rodriguez's attitude about his complexion as a child? What did the people around him say about his complexion?

Part Two: Besides the "Black is Beautiful" movement, what other things changed Rodriguez's attitude about his complexion? How did his attitude change? What do the people around him say about his skin color now that he is an adult?

(see the answer keys)

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