Symposium 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. As explained by Phaedrus, how does Orpheus die as a result of his cowardice?

2. What was Eryximachus' ancestor, Asclepius, an expert in?

3. What is Aristodemus concerned about as he and Socrates go to the party?

4. What does Eryximachus say about his omission of certain things in his speech?

5. According to Eryximachus, how many kinds of love exist in the human body?

Short Essay Questions

1. What advice does Eryximachus have for Aristophanes before he starts speaking?

2. What effect does love have on nature and the seasons, as mentioned in the end of Eryximachus' speech?

3. Who are the parents of love, according to Pausanias?

4. How is Aristodemus' dilemma resolved when he and Socrates arrive at the party?

5. How is the story of the Symposium introduced and who is responsible for telling it?

6. How many kinds of love does Pausanias claim there are and why?

7. Why is Aristophanes unable to speak after Pausanias as scheduled?

8. As Eryximachus explains, what is the role of a doctor in healing a patient?

9. How does Phaedrum describe love at the beginning of his speech?

10. How well does Apollodorus know Socrates in order to verify the information of what took place at the Symposium?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Before Socrates starts giving his speech on love, he takes the time to make some observations about the other speeches and preface his own.

1) Analyze Socrates' opinions of the other speeches in general, including the compliments he has for them, along with the way he dismisses them.

2) Describe Socrates' comments about Agathon's speech.

3) Explain the irony in Socrates' assumption that the speeches should contain the truth and the way that he prepares the guests for his speech.

4) Describe why Socrates is compelled to speak the truth as he understands it, his lack of concern for who it might offend, and how that adds to his reputation.

Essay Topic 2

Diotima teaches Socrates about love and Socrates relates what he has learned to the guests at the Symposium.

1) Describe the definition of love that Socrates begins his speech with, as well as how he reached his opinion.

2) Discuss what Socrates thinks the characteristics of love are, along with why and how they contradict Agathon's speech.

3) Explain the reasons why Socrates believes that love is a spirit.

Essay Topic 3

Explain the possible controversy of Pausanias' speech as it might be interpreted today by detailing his views on relationships and the laws that govern them. Include an analysis of the differences in time period, why Pausanias might have made this type of speech, and whether the practices he endorses are acceptable.

(see the answer keys)

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