Shadow and Act Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. 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.

2. 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."

3. What book does Hemingway believe all modern American fiction sprang from?
(a) The Red Badge of Courage.
(b) Moby Dick.
(c) The Bible.
(d) Huckleberry Finn.

4. What is the "Hidden Name" referred to in the title of Ellison's speech?
(a) The names given to Negro people by their slave owners.
(b) Ernest Hemingway.
(c) Ellison's middle name, Waldo.
(d) Ellison's father's name, George Washington Ellison.

5. What are the three themes of "Shadow and Act" according to the Introduction?
(a) Literature, Jazz/Blues and the relationship between Negro America and American culture.
(b) Classical Dance, Country Music and Folk Art.
(c) White people, Black people, and Native Americans.
(d) Racism, Poverty and Obstruction of Justice.

Short Answer Questions

1. According to Ellison what does the term "the grays" mean?

2. Where does Ellison say civil wars are fought?

3. What three ways do Negroes in Wright's childhood survive?

4. What does Ellison say good fiction is made of?

5. What musician does Ellison see as the true "trickster" archetype?

Short Essay Questions

1. What were some of the catastrophic events which occurred in Wright's life?

2. What does Ellison compare Wright's personal journey of blooming to?

3. What is the common image of the Negro in contemporary literature according to Ellison?

4. Why does Ellison consider Stephen Crane to be such a great artist?

5. What does Ellison find so remarkable about Crane?

6. When Ellison accepts the American National Book Award for "The Invisible Man" what does he say that the award is recognizing?

7. What does Ellison critique about the authors included in the Primer?

8. As a child Ellison imagined himself as a "Renaissance man." What does that mean?

9. What is Ellison's basic quarrel with Hyman?

10. What was Ellison's writing process for "Change the Joke and Slip the Yoke?"

(see the answer keys)

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