The Shrike Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Joseph Kramm
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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 does Ann tell Jim when he first wakes up in the hospital?

2. Why does Jim feel that he is being detained in the fifth scene of the play?

3. How does Jim first appear in the third scene of Act 1?

4. When does the first scene of The Shrike take place?

5. How does Jim respond to Ann after he first wakes up?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why are Ann and Dr. Schlesinger talking in the beginning of Act 1, Scene 4, and what is their reason for hiding it from Jim?

2. How is Jim released and what does he tell Ann on the phone?

3. How are the patients in the convalescent ward described, and what is the contrast between them and Jim in Act 2, Scene 1?

4. Why is the conversation between Jim and Ann in the beginning of Act 2, Scene 4 important?

5. As the doctors try to find out a possible reason for Jim's actions in Act 1, Scene 2, what does Ann reveal to them about his career?

6. What is interesting about the things that Jim tells Dr. Bellman about Ann, and what he will not tell him about Charlotte?

7. How does the nature of the theater and performing arts business during the 1950s lead Jim to believe that he will not be able to regain his former success?

8. Who is Harry, what is he like, and how does Jim respond to him?

9. How is Ann acting in Act 1, Scene 2, and what indication does she give the doctors about her intentions?

10. What is significant about what Jim says at the end of Act 1, Scene 2, and the dialogue between him and Ann?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Describe Jim's theory about life and death and why he does not view his suicide attempt as selfish. Analyze his thought process and whether or not it is valid. Also, explain his ideas about mourning and how they show a larger problem for him and the way he looks at life. Use examples from the play to analyze Jim's theory and what part it played in his eventual captivity.

Essay Topic 2

The staff at the hospital played a necessary role in Jim's stay, state of mind, and actions.

1) Describe the characters you think were the most influential in Jim's hospital stay, how they were depicted, and the ways they affected Jim's actions.

2) Which scenes that included Jim's interactions with the hospital staff were the most important to the plot? Explain the specific part of the scenes and how they were significant to the play.

3) Why do you think there were so many different doctors and attendants that interacted with Jim? What does that display for the hospital's role in the play? Why is this effective in leading to the eventual outcome?

Essay Topic 3

What is relevant about the time in which the play was written? How does it affect Jim's outlook on his life? Explain why Jim was likely to feel as desperate as his did with his career, life, and self-worth. Use examples from the play to provide a detailed analysis of how men were perceived during that time as well as the way the theater/entertainment industry operated differently than it does today.

(see the answer keys)

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