A Simple Heart Test | Mid-Book 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 food item lasted Félicité 20 days?

2. What kind of a mantle is in the living room?

3. Who reads to Félicité for the first time in her life?

4. What decoration is prominent in Mme. Aubain's bedroom?

5. Who does Félicité hear Liebard talk about from her past?

Short Essay Questions

1. What do you think Félicité means when she says of Victor's death that "'It doesn't matter a bit, not to them it doesn't'"?

2. How does Félicité feel about Loulou before she begins to go deaf? How do you know?

3. Describe the scene with the bull and explain why you think it is important.

4. What objects stand out in Félicité's collection of objects and what relationships can you find between them?

5. Why do you think Félicité is hurt by people's jokes about Loulou?

6. At the beginning of the story, what does the narrator tell us about Mme. Aubain's history?

7. Why does Mme. Simon nurse Félicité as she is dying?

8. What does the narrator say about Félicité's age and appearance and why might this be an important detail?

9. Does it seem important that Félicité asks Fabu's forgiveness before she dies?

10. What do we learn about Félicité's eating habits and what do they tell us about her character?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Flaubert is a critical figure in the literary movement called Realism, in which authors attempted to tell a story that mimics life as it actually is. To what extent is "A Simple Heart" realistic? Is Félicité a realistic character? In what ways would you answer yes and in what ways no? Do you think that realism is an attainable goal for a piece of literature?

Essay Topic 2

In this text, the sacred is frequently paired with the worldly. This is certainly true in Félicité's room and in her religious impressions, but there are also traces of it elsewhere. Where else can you see this mix of the religious and the secular? What do you think Flaubert might have meant by it? Be sure to support your analysis with specific examples from the text.

Essay Topic 3

Mme. Aubain frequently functions as a foil for Félicité. Find several examples of this in the text and consider how Flaubert uses Mme. Aubain to draw attention to various aspects of Félicité's character.

(see the answer keys)

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