The Art of the Personal Essay: An Anthology from the Classical Era to the Present 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. Who wrote "An Hour or Two Sacred to Sorrow?"

2. Where is Plutarch traveling when he writes "Consolation to His Wife?"

3. What is Montaigne's general view of humanity?

4. Which of the following is NOT a feature of Charles Lamb's writing?

5. Where did Maria Edgeworth get her nontraditional views from?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the subject of Abraham Cowley's "Of Greatness"? What point does Abraham Cowley make?

2. What was Michel de Montaigne's background prior to writing?

3. Why is Samuel Johnson famous? What kind of essays did he write?

4. What position on slaves does Seneca take in his essay "Slaves?"

5. What is "On Noise" about? What does Seneca advise?

6. What accounts for Maria Edgeworth's nontraditional views of male/female relationships? How are these views represented in "An Essay on the Noble Science of Self-Justification"?

7. What is the subject of Richard Steele's "Twenty-four Hours in London"? What point does Steele make in the story?

8. What subjects are talked about in "On Some Verses of Virgil?"

9. As expressed in "On Some Verses of Virgil," what does Montaigne have to say about the nature of the sexes?

10. Describe the "monstrous child" Montaigne speaks of in "Of a Monstrous Child."

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

"Street Haunting" by Virginia Woolf and "Twenty-four Hours in London" by Richard Steele both detail trips around London.

A) How is London characterized by each author? How is this characterization different between the two essays?

B) What is the message that each author wishes to relay? Why is traveling around London a useful thing?

Essay Topic 2

Journeying is the topic of Henry David Thoreau's "Walking" and William Hazlitt's "On Going a Journey."

A) What is the nature of the "journey" each man takes? Is the journey physical, spiritual, philosophical?

B) How might each man's journey be applied to larger life issues?

Essay Topic 3

"Hashish in Marseilles" by Walter Benjamin and "Under the Influence" by Scott Russell Sanders both speak about substance abuse.

A) How does Benjamin's attitude about substance compare to Sanders'? How might biographical details help to inform us about the formulation of these attitudes?

B) What does each man take away from the substance abuse they have experienced? What might their message for the reader be?

(see the answer keys)

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