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 happens at the end of Beers and Poets and Talk?

2. What does Bukowski keep betting on in Flower Horse?

3. What does Bukowski do with his phone in Notes on a Pest?

4. In Night Streets of Madness, where do Bukowski and the young poet sit?

5. In A Popular Man, who does a man tell Bukowski that his wife has been having an affair with?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. Why does Bukowski think that current poets and comic strips create their art the way they do?

3. What does the murder of Carol's zoo in Animal Crackers in My Soup represent?

4. What does Bukowski think of people's taste in music?

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

6. What does Carol do for Gordon to help him in Animal Crackers in My Soup?

7. In Flower Horse, what do the track and gambling represent?

8. Why does Bukowski usually avoid talking about literature, and what reminds him of of this in Beer and Poets and Talk?

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

10. How do the boys disrespect the memories of the hepcats in The Big Pot Game?

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

In Tales or Ordinary Madness, "A .45 to Pay the Rent" and "Doing Time with Public Enemy No. 1" are two different stories about men in some kind of prison. How is Bukowski different from Duke, personality-wise? How do they deal with their different trials in life, and who do you think handles their "imprisonment" better? 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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