Tales of Henry James: The Texts of the Stories, the Author on His Craft, Background and Criticism 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. What does May Bartram tell John Marcher about his secret?

2. How does James characterize the neighborhood where the telegraph office is located?

3. How does Dr. Hugh create a reason to meet Dencombe?

4. Where does the main character stroll past on her way home?

5. Which was NOT one of Mr. Besant's general laws of fiction?

Short Essay Questions

1. Under what conditions does Spencer Brydon meet Miss Staverton again?

2. What is the telegraph operator's fiancée asking her to do?

3. How does James address the superstition that fiction is diabolical?

4. What does Marcher realize when May Bartram dies?

5. Describe Marcher's lifestyle.

6. Describe the meeting between Dencombe and Dr. Hugh.

7. What is the irony in the secret Marcher has been keeping all these years?

8. Who is Dr. Hugh?

9. Where had John Marcher and May Bartram met previously, and what had happened then?

10. Describe the meeting of Captain Everard and the telegraph operator.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Money is an issue for many of the characters in James' stories. Where does money come from, and who produces it? Which, if any, characters, have earned their freedom by making money themselves, and what kind of freedom do the other characters come by or struggle to attain?

Essay Topic 2

James is occasionally very specific about the season in which his stories are set. What is the literal or symbolic importance of the seasons and nature in James' stories?

Essay Topic 3

Many of James' characters are weak or ineffectual young men. What virtues or strengths do these young men have, and do they compensate for their weaknesses?

(see the answer keys)

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