Skinny Legs and All 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. Why do the objects need human help to leave New York?

2. How does Painted Stick move quickly?

3. What removes Ellen Cherry's feeling of guilt about sleeping with Spike?

4. Why are the streets of New York deserted the night that Spike returns after being shot?

5. What does Ellen Cherry do with her paintings of the objects?

Short Essay Questions

1. How can we interpret the fact that the ancient Salome performs the Dance of the Seven Veils in exchange for John the Baptiste's head and the modern Salome performs it because of Ellen Cherry's painting?

2. Without art and without Boomer, Ellen Cherry is beginning to feel that life is meaningless. What do you think Robbins is saying about the relationship between the meaning we give our lives and our endeavors and/or relationships?

3. Describe what happens to Ellen Cherry when she plays the eye game looking at Spoon.

4. Is there symbolic significance in the event when Ellen Cherry, having determined to paint again, goes looking for Turn Around Norman and finds Buddy instead?

5. Why do you think that Robbins ends the novel with Spoon?

6. Ellen Cherry is clearly upset by the disappearance of Spoon. Explain how you think she feels.

7. Why does Patsy's question concerning second marriage bother Buddy?

8. Is there a reason why Dirty Sock is the only object left behind when the objects escape and never makes it to Jerusalem?

9. Why do you think Salome chooses to perform the Dance of the Seven Veils during the Super Bowl?

10. Painted Stick strikes a human in order to save Spoon from being picked up. Explain why he feels so bad about this.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Work out a detailed character analysis of Buddy. Consider his political and religious views, his actions, his desires, his past, his physical appearance, and his voice. Is he a consistent character? Can you discover some hint of his psychological condition? What leads him to his radical views? Does he strike you as a realistic character? How does his personality play into the action of the novel?

Essay Topic 2

Explore the significance of the title. Ellen Cherry comments that Salome has skinny legs for a belly dancer. Why do you think that Robbins chose this as the defining moment of the novel?

Essay Topic 3

Compare and contrast the historical account in this novel, including Robbins' interpretations of the events with the generally accepted historical view. This requires some basic research. Be careful to limit your comparison to a manageable sequence of events. For example, do not try to track the entire historical background from the first temple to modern day Jerusalem. Choose a coherent part of the history detailed in the novel and limit yourself to that. You could, for example, choose to focus on the Jerusalem from the first temple to the second. Or, you might focus on the 20th century conflict between Israel and Palestine.

(see the answer keys)

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