Tambourines to Glory 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. How does Buddy describe Marty?

2. What does Essie do when Laura inspires her?

3. What cliche does Laura quote to convince Essie?

4. What do they name the new church in the theater?

5. What are Essie and Laura doing at the opening of this novel?

Short Essay Questions

1. How do you think Marietta feels having been raised in the rural South to arrive in Harlem and find an older, very attractive man flirting with her?

2. What does Laura suggest near the end of chapter eight that seems to set the dynamics of how Essie and Laura participate in the "church" and what do you think might be the consequences?

3. What does Laura do to keep the cops from shutting down their church?

4. What is ironic about Laura's thoughts about Buddy in Chapter 30?

5. What might have changed the course of Laura's life if Essie had thrown the knife away when Chicken-Crow-For-Day throws away his weapons in Chapter 12?

6. When Essie says she does not want to buy the Bible with gambling money, Laura accuses her of being too holy and too self righteous; from what do you think this accusation stems?

7. What do you think is the symbolism of the rock mentioned in Chapter 3?

8. Just as Laura says she is like her mother in many ways, in what ways does Laura contrast herself to her mother?

9. At the beginning of Chapter 1, how are the two women described and what might be construed by these descriptions?

10. How is the narration's description of the North being a Black mecca ironic?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In many ways, Laura is a much more complex character than Essie. She exhibits a wider range of emotions and makes more paradoxical choices. Answer the following questions in a well-developed, cohesive essay using examples from the text and your research or personal experience:

1. Going through the book, find various emotions which Laura expresses and discuss several of them and their causes and resolutions.

2. What emotions do you think ultimately leads to Laura's downfall? What emotions do you see in her that could have turned her from the choices she makes and her attendant downfall?

3. Discuss several of Essie's predominant emotions and the causes and how they affect her choices.

4. Essie seems far simpler than Laura: Do you think Essie's simpler personality helps her to stay focused on spiritual goals? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

Chapter 15, "Enter Marty" introduces a new dimension to Essie and Laura's ministry. Answer the following questions in a well-developed, cohesive essay using examples from the text and your research or personal experience:

1. Does it surprise you that a white man is the power behind "the throne" in Harlem in this time period? Explain. Explain the term "the throne" and the irony involved.

2. Why do you think the "Negroes" (the term for Blacks in that era) put up with a white man running the show on their turf? Do you think they eventually change that?

3. Who do you think runs the "throne" in Harlem now? Is the power in white or black hands or both? Or some other?

Essay Topic 3

Street Corner preaching is a tradition that started at the time of Christ and still continues to be done in many places both in the United States and other countries. Essie and Laura begin their ministry as street-corner preachers. Answer the following questions in a well-developed, cohesive essay using examples from the text and your research or personal experience:

1. How would you define street-corner preaching? Do Essie and Laura fit your definition?

2. What are possible advantages and disadvantages of street-corner preaching? Was Essie and Laura's method of street-corner preaching effective?

3. Besides religion, what other ways is street-corner preaching used today? Would you stop and listen to a street-corner preacher? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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