The Blind Assassin 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. What is the name of the assassin sent to kill the king?

2. What is the primary good manufactured by Chase Industries?

3. What is the name of the restaurant where Richard proposes to Iris?

4. Where was Laura rumored to be?

5. In what country is the novel set?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Benjamin Chase marry Adelia?

2. In chapter 4, how does the woman feel about the man's story?

3. In chapter 1, the protagonist of the sub novel looks at a picture. What does this picture depict?

4. According to chapter 6, does the man enjoy writing science fiction stories?

5. In chapter 1, what is the official conclusion of Laura's cause of death?

6. On her deathbed, Iris's mother tells her to promise to do something for her. What does Iris promise her mother she will do?

7. In chapter 4, what is Richard Griffen's stance on creating jobs throughout government stimulus plans implemented in America by Franklin D. Roosevelt?

8. How does Iris feel about the Laura Chase Memorial Prize?

9. In chapter 1, Iris says "some people can't tell where it hurts. They can't calm down. They can't ever stop howling." Who do you think is/are the "they" she had in mind?

10. In chapter 5, how do the two sisters feel toward their governess, Miss Violence?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Although the identities of the man and woman are not revealed until the penultimate chapter, there are many hints to the characters' identities in overlapping details between events in Iris's memoir and those in 'The Blind Assassin'. Give examples of at least three details that align the memoir with 'The Blind Assassin' and explain what these details tell the reader about the man and the woman.

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the relationship between author and story, and fiction and nonfiction as presented in the novel. Iris never explicitly mentions her affair with Alex within the memoir, while her meetings with him serve as the basis for the frame narrative of 'The Blind Assassin'. To what extent do you think 'The Blind Assassin' represents the reality of Iris and Alex's affair and to what extent do you think Iris fictionalizes the story? How does this relate to the novel as a whole? Do you think Atwood's novel is at all based in her own reality? Give examples to support your view from the text.

Essay Topic 3

Aimee blames her mother for Laura's death. Iris, too, blames herself for Laura's death, but defends herself by saying she did not choose her actions, but was rather forced into them. Is Iris responsible for Laura's death, and if so, what could she have done to prevent it and if not, why not?

(see the answer keys)

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