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. What does Ellison praise about "Primer for White Folks?"
(a) The search for images of black and white fraternity.
(b) Realistic and therefore does not contain much hope.
(c) Easy to read and young children will like it.
(d) Short and to the point.

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

3. What does Mark Twain do with the character of Jim that breaks through the black face minstrel tradition?
(a) Jim is stereotypical and boring.
(b) Jim performs black face without the paint.
(c) He's a complex, dignified and very human person.
(d) Jim's very serious and not at all fun.

4. What type of literature does Ellison believe Wright's novel "Black Boy" is?
(a) Work of fiction.
(b) Autobiography.
(c) Weapon against prejudice and injustice.
(d) Sociological case history.

5. What is Ellison's original choice of career?
(a) Barber.
(b) Politician.
(c) Policeman.
(d) Musician.

6. Violence is inflicted upon Wright by family, friends, and society as a whole. What is his response?
(a) Seclusion.
(b) Passivity.
(c) Retreat.
(d) Violence.

7. What does Huckleberry Finn recognize about the Negro character, Jim?
(a) Jim knows the landscape and can take Huck anywhere.
(b) Jim is very ill and near death.
(c) Jim can make him lots of money if Huck will return him to his owner.
(d) Jim is not only a slave, but a human being.

8. How does Ellison describe the writer Malraux?
(a) Polar opposite.
(b) French counterpart.
(c) Literary ancestor.
(d) Greatest nemesis.

9. What are Crane's parents like?
(a) Fundamentalist Christians.
(b) Marxist sympathizers.
(c) French born intellectuals.
(d) Libertine alcoholics.

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

11. What is dangerous and different about Wright's attitude?
(a) Ran for public office and refused to accept defeat.
(b) Refused to participate in school.
(c) Sought individual freedom in a "pre-individual" Negro culture.
(d) Was loud and demanding of others.

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

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

14. As a child what is Wright unable to distinguish between?
(a) When to be quiet and when to speak.
(b) Right and Wrong.
(c) His fair-skinned grandmother and the white women of the town.
(d) Day and night.

15. Why does Oklahoma hold some freedom and equality for Negroes at the time Ellison lived there?
(a) There are almost no Negroes in Oklahoma.
(b) It is fully integrated and equality was legislated.
(c) Oklahoma is founded on Mormon principles which forbade prejudice.
(d) It has no tradition of slavery.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Ellison believe is the true "Negro experience?"

2. What is the relationship between Ellison and Stanley Hyman?

3. What does Ellison say the greatest difficulty for the Negro writer is?

4. Who is Richard Wright to Ellison?

5. How does Ellison describe the philosopher Kierkegaard in the "Stephen Crane.." essay?

(see the answer keys)

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