Tales of Ordinary Madness 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. Where does Bukowski return home to at the end of My Stay at the Poet's Cottage?

2. Where does Jack Hendley arrive in Cunt and Kant and a Happy Home?

3. What job does Dan Skorski quit?

4. What author does the narrator name in describing something about himself in Goodbye Watson?

5. What does Mrs. Connors bring Mr. Sneed?

Short Essay Questions

1. In My Stay in the Poet's Cottage, how does Bukowski reply to the editor who is shocked at his walking in the stifling heat rather than wait for the bus?

2. How does the boyfriend choose to interpret his girlfriend's insult in Too Sensitive?

3. Describe the character of Signo in The Stupid Christs.

4. Why does Signo fire Skorski in The Stupid Christs?

5. How do pain and violence play a role in Nut Ward East of Hollywood?

6. How does Bukowksi obey social conventions when attending the wedding in The Great Zen Wedding?

7. How is the foreman in Love it or Leave it cruel?

8. In Great Poets Die in Steaming Pots of Shit, how does Bukowski feel about his fans, and why?

9. In Cunt and Kant and a Happy Home, describe the highs and lows of Jack Hendley's horse races.

10. What kind of relationships does Bukowski form in My Stay in the Poet's Cottage?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Many different ideas and themes are connected in Tales of Ordinary Madness, but "Notes of a Potential Suicide" reveals connections that are more obvious. What connections are revealed in the story? How is the symphony connected to the Air Show event? What makes them memorable or important for Bukowski? Make sure you answer each question with evidence and support from the story.

Essay Topic 2

Many stories in "Tales of Ordinary Madness" involve a serious addiction to gambling. Using at least two stories as examples, describe how gambling play a role in the main characters' lives. Describe the cycle of addiction. How does gambling affect the characters' lives? Make sure you answer each question with evidence and support from the stories.

Essay Topic 3

As the title indicates, "Too Sensitive" contains the theme of sensitivity. Describe the way sensitivity is displayed in the story. How does the narrator suffer from his own kind of sensitivity despite his thinking that he is not sensitive? Make sure you answer each question with evidence and support from the story.

(see the answer keys)

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