The Beautiful Room Is Empty 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. Which religion does the narrator believe in?

2. When the narrator takes a walk at night with Maria, he realizes that __________________.

3. The story begins with quotes from novelists Anatole France and _________________.

4. Who is another person the narrator seeks out for sexual relations?

5. How can Paul best be described?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the narrator meet Tex and Morris?

2. What is Tex's theory about a man acting on his sexual desires for other men and how does that make the narrator feel about Tex?

3. How is Buddhism connected to the narrator's seemingly paradoxical desires for sex with men and also freedom from that desire.

4. How does the narrator categorize his life during his first year at college?

5. Why does the narrator long to be heterosexual, especially when he sees the irresponsible behavior of his heterosexual fraternity brothers?

6. How does the narrator compare his life to the life of the Chinese woman he meets?

7. Why did the narrator decide to study Chinese?

8. What is the double-edged sword of the narrator experiencing gay sexual activity?

9. With whom does the narrator engage in heterosexual activity and what was the basis for the connections?

10. What role does Dr. O'Reilly serve in the narrator's life?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The author uses more than one iteration on the theme of the search for love. Identify at least two themes about love in the book. Then cite an example to support each theme you name.

Essay Topic 2

Describe the major settings for the novel. Why does White use the settings he does? What is the time period of the story? How important is the time period to the attitudes and issues of the characters?

Essay Topic 3

Substance abuse seems to be an unnamed character in the book. How pervasive is the abuse? Why does it have such a prevalent place in the characters' lives? How does it affect the abusers? How does it affect those impacted by the abusers? Explain how an inanimate object or characteristic can be a character.

(see the answer keys)

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