Sizwe Banzi Is Dead 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. In the words of Styles in Part one, "We own nothing but..."

2. What type of picture does Styles aim to provide for Zwelinzima?

3. What was the name of the insect spray in the commercial in the first part of the play?

4. What did the owner of the house do to help the narrator of the letter while he was supposedly living there?

5. Which American President does Styles refer to as having an effect on South Africa?

Short Essay Questions

1. How could the mention of the name Robert Zwelinzima be a powerful instance of foreshadowing?

2. In what way does Style's story about the Ford plant speech show that he was an enterprising personality even before he had his own business?

3. What can be extrapolated from the fact that Sizwe writes to his wife about living in another woman's home, and that despite their working together, they were not able to succeed?

4. Without having seen the play, what would be a safe implication to make about the character of Robert, given that one of the first things he does is give his name and immediately afterward, his address?

5. What does Sizwe claim that the dead Robert is doing in light of the idea of Sizwe taking his identity/name?

6. Why does Buntu tell Sizwe the story of Jacob, a man who recently died?

7. Are Sizwe's and Buntu's reactions to finding the dead body the same? Explain your answer.

8. Of what significance is Robert turning out to introduce himself to Buntu as Sizwe Banzi?

9. Why could it be hypocritical of Buntu to tell the story about Jacob?

10. At the start of Part 3, why does Buntu say Sizwe is in real trouble?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

In the final moments of the play, Styles tells Sizwe to smile. Explain how this instruction from one character to another functions as a summary of the play's themes of hope, struggle, and change.

Essay Topic 2

The passbook is a powerful metaphor for racism and white power. Discuss its effect on the lives of the different characters in the play.

Essay Topic 3

The real Robert Zwelinzima of the play seems to have died a violent death. Discuss whether or not this could be a symbol, and if so, what it could be a symbol of.

(see the answer keys)

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