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 Ellison's reaction to the term "Negro culture?"

2. What kind of bird does Ellison say Parker is?

3. What song moves Jackson into the public eye?

4. What institutions does Minton's evolve out of?

5. What race of people are allowed into Minton's?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. What are the two categories Jones places the blues in?

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

4. What type of food is served at Minton's?

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

6. What is the film "Intruder in the Dust" about?

7. Where is the Lefargue Psychiatric Clinic located?

8. What place does "Living with Music" describe?

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

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

"Richard Wright's Blues" explores the history of southern Negro culture. What was the atmosphere Wright grew up in? What would he have been afraid of? Where did the violence, especially the beating and punishment from Negro parents upon their children, come from? How did this environment affect the young Wright? If he had stayed in the south would he have bloomed into the writer and thinker that he did? What did Ellison think about the chances of that happening?

Essay Topic 2

In "Change the Joke and Slip the Yoke" Ellison challenges Stanley Hyman's assertion the "smart man playing dumb" role is primarily Negro. What does Ellison propose is the true case? What examples does he use to argue that this "joke" is much broader than Negro culture? How does this understanding fit with the larger theme in Ellison's work of the relationship between Negro culture and American culture?

Essay Topic 3

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?

(see the answer keys)

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