Shadow and Act Test | Mid-Book Test - Easy

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This test consists of 15 multiple choice questions and 5 short answer questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. Who is Mrs. L.C. McFarland?
(a) Literary critic for the New York Post.
(b) Woman who would become Ellison's second wife.
(c) History teacher in Ellison's grade school.
(d) Author of "Bound for Glory Someday".

2. Why does Ellison reject the "hard-boiled" novel style of writing?
(a) Full of physical violence, social cynicism and understatement.
(b) Too boring for what he wants to say.
(c) Primarily a white form of writing.
(d) Focused on detectives and criminals.

3. Which critics of "Black Boy" does Ellison want to respond to?
(a) Those who believe Wright is self-involved.
(b) Those who believe Wright is a communist.
(c) Those who believe Wright is exaggerating the truth.
(d) Those who see the book as a miracle and its author a mystery.

4. Who is Stephen Crane?
(a) Ellison's first English professor who wrote "Black like me."
(b) A 20th century novelist and author of "Here today, gone tomorrow."
(c) A English gentleman who has fast holdings of land, slaves and wealth.
(d) A novelist born just after the Civil War.

5. How does Ellison describe Wright's autobiography "Black Boy?"
(a) A non-white intellectual's statement of his relationship with Western culture.
(b) An angry young man's immoderate tale of delusion.
(c) Another failed attempt to pierce the great wall between races.
(d) The Negro answer to "Huckleberry Finn."

6. What is it that widens Ellison's world in a dramatic way?
(a) Living with a white family.
(b) Reading.
(c) Athletics.
(d) Traveling abroad.

7. What is the origin of the essay "Change the Joke and Slip the Yoke?"
(a) "Invisible Man."
(b) Letter written by Ellison when he was living in Rome to an old friend.
(c) Short story about lynching.
(d) Treatise on the folk art of tying knots.

8. Where is the essay "Richard Wright's Blues" published and when?
(a) The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Summer 1935.
(b) The Antioch Review, Summer 1945.
(c) The Oklahoman Messenger, Winter 1919.
(d) The New York Times, Fall 1955.

9. What does Wright do at age four?
(a) Begins to read.
(b) Makes a speech at church.
(c) Plays the piano.
(d) Sets the house on fire.

10. Who names Ellison?
(a) His parish priest.
(b) His father.
(c) A passing stranger.
(d) The midwife that delivered him.

11. What does the phrase "to finger its jagged grain and to transcend it" refer to?
(a) To walk the razor's edge of reason.
(b) The power of the blues.
(c) The complexity of writing fiction.
(d) To climb great mountains.

12. Why does Ellison consider Stephen Crane a great artist?
(a) He wrote so many books.
(b) He was talented in so many artistic fields.
(c) He was the first great Negro author.
(d) Under pressure and panic he stuck to his guns.

13. What specific folk art form does "Black Boy" reflect?
(a) Modern dance.
(b) African ethnic mask making.
(c) The blues.
(d) Folk sculpture.

14. How old is Crane when he wrote his masterpiece "The Red Badge of Courage?"
(a) 16,
(b) 45.
(c) 79.
(d) 21.

15. That Ellison's first novel might win a prestigious award makes him think what?
(a) There is a crisis in the American novel.
(b) The committee has made a huge mistake.
(c) He is a brilliant writer.
(d) He is chosen only because he is Negro.

Short Answer Questions

1. Which American writers is the piece "Black Boys and Native Sons" about?

2. Where and when is the essay "Change the Joke and Slip the Yoke" published?

3. What does Crane die of and where?

4. How does Ellison describe the writer Malraux?

5. Where is Richard Wright born?

(see the answer keys)

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