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. Why does Ellison choose to analyze Mark Twain?
(a) Twain was a slave owner and trader.
(b) Twain offers a unique historical perspective.
(c) Twain was a humorist.
(d) Twain was married to a Negro woman.

2. For Ellison who is the greatest artist the south has ever produced?
(a) William Falkner.
(b) Mark Twain.
(c) Ralph Ellison.
(d) Ernest Hemingway.

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

4. What does Ellison say good fiction is made of?
(a) What is real.
(b) Tricks of the trade.
(c) Eternal truth.
(d) Fun.

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

Short Answer Questions

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

2. What assumption does Ellison start with when writing about Negro persons?

3. As a child what do Ellison and his boyhood friends believe they are to do?

4. Violence is inflicted upon Wright by family, friends, and society as a whole. What is his response?

5. Where does Ellison say civil wars are fought?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does the "drunk of legend" who lives on the corner do?

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

3. What does Ellison believe is the primary American theme in both life and literature?

4. Who is LeRoi Jones?

5. Why does the Carnegie Foundation bring in a European (Swedish) economist to conduct a study of Negro persons in America?

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

7. Why does Ellison say that the least form of segregation is the word?

8. In the Paris Review (Spring 1955) Ellison was interviewed about his work as a writer. What does he say his first piece of professional writing was?

9. Who does the song "They picked poor robin clean" remind Ellison of?

10. How does the early film "Birth of the Nation" portray Negro persons?

(see the answer keys)

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