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. When does Jones place the beginnings of the blues?

2. In "The Art of Fiction: An Interview" what does Ellison say at the very beginning?

3. What do the blues capture?

4. What is the basic spiritual outlook of the American Negro?

5. What is Mrs. Jackson cooking in "The Way It Is?"

Short Essay Questions

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

2. Why does Ellison disagree with Jones when he says "A slave cannot be a man"?

3. Who is Teddy Hill?

4. What does Ellison say about a Negro President?

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

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

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

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

9. 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?

10. Who is Mahalia Jackson?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Lafargue Psychiatric Clinic is profiled with a sense of gratitude and anger. What is Ellison angry about and why? As much as he admires the clinic, why does he feel it should not be necessary? What is at the source of mental suffering for many persons in the Harlem community?

Essay Topic 2

The final essay in the book was never published. It is a book review of the Swedish economist Gunnar Myrdal who was brought in by the Carnegie Foundation to study the "Negro problem." What is Ellison's primary reaction to the book? What is positive in Myrdal's assessment? What does Ellison object to? Why do you think the review was never published?

Essay Topic 3

In the four articles on musicians written for the Saturday Review, Ellison explores the development of each individual artist. What do Mahalia Jackson, Charlie Parker, Charlie Christian and Jimmy Rushing have in common? Why does Ellison choose both nationally famous and locally famous musicians to write about? How are the careers and styles of the four musicians different?

(see the answer keys)

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