The America Play, and Other Works 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. In "An Equation for Black People Onstage," Parks calls for African-Americans "to show the world and ourselves our beautiful and powerfully" what?

2. How many children do the Smiths have in "Greeks (or the Slugs)"?

3. When was Suzan-Lori Parks born?

4. Who arrives looking for the person with the cockroach bites in scene "F" of "Snails"?

5. What title of a play in the collection was derived from a phrase in a half-waking dream of the author's?

Short Essay Questions

1. What metaphoric statement is made through repetition in "Betting on the Dust Commander"?

2. What imagined encounter does Aretha experience in "C" of "Open House"?

3. What issues are discussed between Molly and Charlene in "C" of "Snails"?

4. What does Parks relate about the contemporary theatre in "Elements of Style"?

5. For what subjects and themes is Suzan-Lori Parks well-known?

6. What proposition does Lucius present in scene "B" of "Betting on the Dust Commander"? What did a woman at church criticize him for?

7. What is the central premise of the essay "Possession"? What play was inspired by a dream?

8. What does the cockroach represent in "Snails"?

9. What does Suzan-Lori Parks imply about African American youth in "Open House"?

10. What opening statement defines the essay "An Equation for Black People Onstage"? What does Parks' mean with the statement?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Define and analyze metaphor and symbolism in "Snails." What can the cockroach and Naturalist be seen as symbols of in society? Why?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss postmodernism in literature and the role of the "other," and analyze how these terms apply to "An Equation for Black People Onstage" and the philosophies of Suzan-Lori Parks.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the staging, setting, and imagery in "Betting on the Dust Commander." In past productions of the work, how is the set and lighting described? What notes does the playwright give?

(see the answer keys)

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