Speak, Memory: An Autobiography Revisited 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 is seen as a dreaded event?

2. When does Nabokov see Mademoiselle again after she is no longer in their household?

3. What is happening to the science of butterflies at this time?

4. Mademoiselle threatens several times to leave. Why does she end up staying?

5. What does the butterfly net in particular always invite?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe Nabokov's encounters with his cousin, Yuri.

2. What happens to the family once they leave Russia?

3. Why does Nabokov have trouble sleeping?

4. The local schoolmaster is brought in to give the children a crash course in the Russian language. What takes place at a meeting between the father, son, and schoolmaster?

5. Who is Kirill?

6. Describe Nabokov's mother.

7. What are Vladimir and Colette caught doing?

8. Nabokov reveals that his mind always associates sounds with colors. How does his mother react to this unusual sensibility?

9. How are the Nabokov's affected by their son? What do we learn about Dmitri, as he grows?

10. The aristocratic Nabokov house is stocked with English and French amenities. What are some of the amenities?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Nabokov has always had difficulty sleeping.

Part 1) Why?

Part 2) What is the purpose of an autobiography?

Part 3) What is the purpose of this autobiography?

Essay Topic 2

There is a great gulf between classes in early-twentieth century Russia.

Part 1) What evidence from the text proves this statement.

Part 2) How does this separation of classes affect Russia?

Part 3) How might Nabokov's experiences have changed once he emigrates to Western Europe, and finally to the United States? How mighthe feel about these changes?

Essay Topic 3

With what is Nabokov fascinated, in fact, obsessed? Give examples from the text to support your response. How do the members of his household encourage this obsession?

(see the answer keys)

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