Small Steps 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. Armpit notices that __________ is missing.

2. Where do Armpit and X-Ray go to unload another pair of tickets?

3. What has one customer offered for the last two tickets?

4. Who appears and intervenes on Armpit's behalf?

5. How is El Genius behaving?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Kaira say about Armpit and Ginny's experience with the forged tickets?

2. Who is Karia DeLeon?

3. Who is Ginny and what do she and Armpit talk about when he gets home?

4. Who goes with Armpit to meet X-Ray, and why does Armpit refuse to sell any tickets to the white guys the first time Armpit and X-ray meet up with them?

5. What happens when X-Ray wakes Armpit the next morning?

6. Why does Armpit want to borrow one of Ginny's stuffed animals and which one does she recommend?

7. About what does the band hint to Kaira and what is her response?

8. What happens between Armpit and some police officers and why?

9. What speech does Armpit deliver using Coo as a prop, and how does Tatiana respond?

10. What does Kaira decide to sing and how does it turn out?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The narrative manifests its thematic interest in the alluring power of money. Also here, it's important to consider how, in some fundamental ways, there is little moral, essential difference between what X-Ray does to Armpit and what El Genius is later revealed to be doing to Kaira. The scope and level of violence are quite different, but the basic principles behind their actions are the same where greed rules.

1. Do you think that a huge sum of money will corrupt everyone? Why or why not? Use examples from your own life and Small Steps to support your reasoning.

2. Explain whether what Armpit and X-Ray did is the same or not the same as what El Genius did except on a smaller scale. Use examples from your own life and Small Steps to support your reasoning.

3. Do you think X-Ray and Armpit should have been punished for scalping and using fake tickets? Was X-Ray more to blame than Armpit? Why or why not? Use examples from your own life and Small Steps to support your reasoning.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss one of the following:

1. Thoroughly analyze how the setting informs the plot in Small Steps.

2. Trace and analyze one major theme of Small Steps. How is the theme represented by symbolism? By the characters' behaviors? By the action?

3. Trace and analyze two secondary themes of Small Steps. How are the themes represented by symbolism? By the characters' behaviors? By the action?

Essay Topic 3

Important elements in Chapter 14 and 15 include the Mayor's outright suggestion that the actions of the police are motivated and/or defined by racism and the appearance of the Mayor herself. This comes across as something of a deus ex machina, a term first used in Ancient Greek theater to describe an incident in which conflict was resolved by the unexpected intervention of an all-powerful god, arbitrary but necessary for the story to be resolved how the author wanted it to be. Yes, the author of "Small Steps" has made an effort to establish at least some relationship between Armpit and the Mayor (Chapter 1), but there is the sense that the only reason that scene exists is to make the mayor's appearance here seem a little less unlikely. If that is, in fact, the case, the attempt doesn't really work. It seems highly unlikely that such an important official as the mayor, even one who enjoys Kaira's music as much as this one seems to, would be on the crowded floor of the stadium during a concert.

1. Do you think it is likely or unlikely that the police's actions were partly due to racism? Why or why not? Use examples from your own life and Small Steps to support your reasoning.

2. Explain in detail, why the mayor being at the concert was a type of deus ex machina. Use examples from your own life and Small Steps to support your reasoning.

3. Explain, in depth, why the mayor being at the concert was or was not a narrative contrivance. Use examples from your own life and Small Steps to support your reasoning.

(see the answer keys)

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