Tales of Ordinary Madness 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 Bukowski say in Notes on a Pest that every man has inside him?

2. What is the name of the man's daughter in One for Walter Lowenfels?

3. How does the boy respond to the old man in Night Streets of Madness?

4. How does Bukowski discover what he does in A Bad Trip?

5. When does one particular pest call Bukowski?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Bukowski think of sex in Purple as an Iris?

2. What does a pest do, according to Bukowski in Notes on the Pest?

3. Why is the idea that every man can be a pest scary in Notes on the Pest?

4. What does Bukowski hallucinate, and what is it associated with in The Blanket?

5. What else does Bukowski realize about himself when he sees Luke in I Shot a Man in Reno?

6. What do Bukowski's visitors take away from him in A Popular Man?

7. Why does Bukowski welcome death in A Popular Man?

8. Who is causing all the noise with the car horn in Night Streets of Madness, and why?

9. What does Bukowski think of current poets and comic strips in Eyes Like the Sky?

10. Why does Bukowski cry after burning the blanket in The Blanket?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

"Beer and Poets and Talk" displays Bukowski talking about literature freely, which is a rare instance in this collection of stories. What are Bukowski's thoughts on literature, and what does he think of it in comparison to reality? Why does he emphasize either literature or reality over the other? What does the arguing couple remind him of? Make sure you answer each question with evidence and support from the story.

Essay Topic 2

One recurring theme in Tales of Ordinary Men is balance between life and literature. Describe Bukowski's ideas on life and literature from at least two stories from the collection. Which is more important to him, and why? Make sure you answer each question with evidence and support from the stories.

Essay Topic 3

"Reunion" and "Cunt and Kant and a Happy Home" both contain characters with an addiction--one has an addiction to alcohol, while the other has a gambling addiction. How do each characters' addiction affect their life? Does it affect anyone around them, and if so, how? Describe the cycle of addiction as seen in the stories. Make sure you answer each question with evidence and support from the stories.

(see the answer keys)

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