Shadow and Act Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is unique about "The Way It Is" compared to the other essays?

2. Why does "Invisible Man" take so long to complete?

3. What does the chaos of noise cause in Ellison?

4. What church does Mahalia grow up in?

5. Who is LeRoi Jones?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does the mural above the bandstand at Minton's depict?

2. When asked when he began "Invisible Man" what does Ellison answer?

3. What type of music does the upstairs singer practice all day?

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

5. Where is "Minton's Playhouse" located?

6. What experience in Ellison's childhood gives him patience with his upstairs singing neighbor?

7. What does Ellison say is the invisible man's discovery?

8. What captures the attention of many critics about "Blues People."

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

10. Where is the Lefargue Psychiatric Clinic located?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In "Some Questions and Some Answers" Ellison makes the provocative statement that there is no Negro culture. What does he mean by this? How does he support his argument? What history does he draw upon to reveal his thinking on this matter?

Essay Topic 2

Overall Ellison praises LeRoi Jones book "Blues People." However, there are elements of Jones' analysis of the blues which are not up to Ellison's high standards. What are the major criticisms he makes of Jones? How does he support his argument against the conclusions Jones comes to?

Essay Topic 3

In "Hidden Name and Complex Fate" Ellison reveals that it was his father, who died when Ellison was three years old, who chose for him the name of a famous white poet and philosopher, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and in doing so cast upon him a complex fate. What was that fate and how did it slowly reveal itself through Ellison's life? Why was it such a struggle to come to peace with? Why was it such a blessing and a curse?

(see the answer keys)

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