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 is minstrel show black face?
(a) Dark themed short skits and plays in vaudeville.
(b) Southern music and dance.
(c) Black actors acting in minstrel shows that are comic and touching.
(d) White performers painting their faces black and acting in a pseudo-Negro nonsensical way.

2. Why does Ellison begin the speech by referring to Ernest Hemingway?
(a) Hemingway is often misspelled and therefore hidden.
(b) Hemingway once called Ellison by the wrong name, Emerson.
(c) Hemingway is a writer Ellison strongly identifies with.
(d) The name Hemingway is a pseudonym.

3. Where might Crane have gotten information about the Civil War?
(a) His brother.
(b) Manuscripts and letters.
(c) Intensive scholarly research.
(d) His own experience.

4. What is the occasion of Ellison's speech "Brave Words on a Startling Occasion?"
(a) Address to the Harvard University graduating class of 1950.
(b) Acceptance of the American National Book Award in 1953.
(c) Eldest son's wedding.
(d) Induction into the American Negro Writer's Hall of Fame.

5. Why does Ellison's family live in a middle class white neighborhood in Oklahoma City?
(a) His mother, a single parent, is a custodian in an apartment building there.
(b) Ellison's family has always been well to do and had nice houses.
(c) Ellison's father made a great deal of money in the railroad business.
(d) There is no Negro neighborhood in Oklahoma City.

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

7. 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.

8. What does Ellison believe writing is?
(a) A way to criticize others.
(b) Channeling of higher beings.
(c) Ethical instrument.
(d) Mindless activity.

9. What does the phrase "beating that boy" mean?
(a) A quick victory in chess.
(b) The actions of white policemen upon finding Negros in the wrong part of town.
(c) The insidious method of beating the life out of a Negro man by calling him "boy".
(d) Polite conversation between white and Negro persons about the "Negro problem".

10. What Greek myth does Ellison refer to in "Brave Words?"
(a) The birth of Athena.
(b) Theseus and Antigone.
(c) The Odyssey and Proteus.
(d) Zeus and Poseidon.

11. Where and when is the essay "Change the Joke and Slip the Yoke" published?
(a) Yale Literary Review, Winter, 1960.
(b) Life Magazine, Summer, 1958.
(c) New Yorker Magazine, Summer, 1959.
(d) Partisan Review, Spring 1958.

12. What does Crane die of and where?
(a) Tuberculosis, in the far Black Forest of Germany.
(b) In a fierce battle on the plains of Alsace.
(c) Murder, on board a ship crossing the Atlantic.
(d) The black plague of 1834, in London, England.

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

14. How does Ellison describe the philosopher Kierkegaard in the "Stephen Crane.." essay?
(a) The keeper of Sophocles flame.
(b) Pinnacle of the romantic poets of the 1950s.
(c) Household god for many contemporary novelists.
(d) Philosopher king who wrecked the castle.

15. Who is Irving Howe?
(a) White liberal writer from New York City.
(b) Pseudonym for Richard Wright.
(c) Hispanic Indian man who met Ellison in a bar.
(d) Negro professor from Mississippi University.

Short Answer Questions

1. In the essay "Change the Joke and Slip the Yoke" what does Ellison say black face allows white America to do?

2. What distresses Ellison most about the essay "Black Boys and Native Sons?"

3. Who is Mrs. L.C. McFarland?

4. Why does Ellison choose to write "Invisible Man" in a non-naturalistic way?

5. Who is Stanley Edgar Hyman?

(see the answer keys)

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