Something Like an Autobiography 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 did Kurosawa's father insist he do if he is to take Kendo lessons?

2. How does Mr. Iwamatsu respond to students who are struggling with exams?

3. Which of the following is not a physical reaction that Kurosawa had to being challenged in primary school?

4. Why was young Akira sent to Toyokawa Village?

5. What did young Akira do in Toyokawa Village to impress his fellow young people?

Short Essay Questions

1. How was young Akira humbled in The Goblin's Nose?

2. Describe Akira's relationship with Aunt Togashi.

3. What happened on September 1, 1923?

4. In Keika Middle School, how does Kurosawa refute the assessment that he was no good at sports?

5. How was Akira Kurosawa introduced to film at an early age?

6. How does Kurosawa compare his parents' personalities in Kendo?

7. Why did Akira Kurosawa not fight in the military?

8. Why was Akira sent to Toyokawa Village by his father?

9. What was Kurosawa's experience at Morimura Gakuen?

10. Why does Akira Kurosawa not understand the concept of hometowns?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

When Akira Kurosawa began to establish himself in the film industry, the War was still going on and a group of Japanese censors were reviewing his films. Write an essay about his conflicts with the censors. What specific issues do the censors have with his early pictures? How does he respond to these issues? Discuss the way Kurosawa describes the censors int he text. How did the conflict between the censors and Kurosawa end with the War?

Essay Topic 2

Akira Kurosawa, almost as soon as he begins directing features, proves that he is a demanding and visionary director. He takes risks and makes bold choices with his first features. Write an essay about some of these features. What is his reason for directing each? What big and difficult does he choose in terms of the shoot? What do the cast and crew think of these decisions? What sort of conflict develops? Do these risks pay off in the long run?

Part 1) Sugata Sanshiro

Part 2) The Most Beautiful

Part 3) Drunk Angel

Essay Topic 3

Akira Kurosawa's development over the course of the book is defined not only by the growing experiences that allow him to improve himself. Unfortunate and often tragic events allow him the ability to develop in their own way. Write an essay about three such events:

Part 1) What is Akira's experience during the Great Kanto Earthquake? How old was he at this point, and what cruel realities did he learn from it? Discuss not only the initial damage from the quake itself but also the human violence that followed. Why did Akira's brother force him to observe the carnage?

Part 2) Why does Akira's brother commit suicide? Discuss how this moment - occurring at a crossroads in the author's life - affects the direction of Akira's career? What was his brother's connection to the film industry, and how did this connection precipitate his suicide?

Part 3) Discuss Akira Kurosawa's involvement in the Second World War. Why did he not fight in the Pacific? What were his feelings toward his nation's imperialist actions, and what did he do about them? What was the affect of defeat on Akira? How did his concept of nation change overnight?

(see the answer keys)

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