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 his recollection spurred by the insect repellent, what animal does Styles compare himself to?

2. What memento does Styles have left of his father?

3. What is the first customer that Styles describes coming into the shop for a picture?

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

5. What job did Styles' father hold?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why, after Sizwe asks Buntu how long it will "last," does Buntu suddenly says he's tired, bid goodnight to Robert and leave?

2. Why does Buntu's mood change at the end of Part 3?

3. Explain how as an audience, we know from the very opening scene that this play will involve the concepts of racial discrimination against blacks, and their struggles.

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

5. In Buntu's story about Jacob, what does the preacher say about death?

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

7. In Part 4, how is it revealed that Sizwe has already taken on the dead man's identity?

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

9. How does Buntu help Sizwe "practice" being Robert Zwelinzima?

10. What is the purpose of Robert being illuminated in a single light right before he begins narrating his letter to his wife?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the idea of being 'alive' versus being 'dead' or a 'ghost' as represented in the play.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the effect of having Styles and Buntu played by the same actor. What parallels and contrasts are there between the two characters, and how are they significant to the play as a whole?

Essay Topic 3

How, in Part 1 of the play, does the playwright use metaphor to show the living situation of black workers in Apartheid-era South Africa? Make reference to the stories of a) Styles' job at the Ford plant and Henry Ford Jr's visit, and b) The 'Doom' insect spray and the cat.

(see the answer keys)

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