The Botany of Desire Test | Final Test - Medium

Michael Pollan
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. Who took to wearing potato flowers in her hair in order to encourage the peasants to grow this plant for themselves?
(a) Catherine the Great.
(b) No one.
(c) Marie Antoinette.
(d) Anne Tyler.

2. According to the book, _____ are the only people on Earth who do not have a practice of using psychoactive plants to change consciousness.
(a) Africans.
(b) Australians.
(c) Icelandic people.
(d) Eskimos.

3. The book suggests that the decisions that a culture makes in which plants drugs to promote or prohibit help to ______.
(a) Reinforce cohesion.
(b) Promote instability.
(c) Marginalize people.
(d) Make people feel bad.

4. Farmers who plant Bt crops must leave a certain portion of their land for non-Bt crops to provide a ________ for the bugs.
(a) School.
(b) Refuge.
(c) Study.
(d) Trap.

5. The book suggests that gardens used to be planted as a kind of living _____ that cared little for aesthetics.
(a) Art form.
(b) Mandala.
(c) Apothecary.
(d) Display of beauty.

Short Answer Questions

1. Peruvian legend has it that _____ are associated with the discovery of quinine through eating the bark of the cinchona tree.

2. According to the book, drugs that alter the user's perception of time and space are taboo because they disrupt the _______.

3. Goats are associated with the discovery of _____, when it was observed they became frisky after eating the red berries.

4. Where are the Monsanto headquarters located, according to Pollan's description in the book?

5. What is second nature to a gardener, who leans that every advance in his control of the garden is also an invitation for disaster?

Short Essay Questions

1. What was going on at the time of Pollan's visit to Amsterdam for research for this book?

2. What is the most important thing to an animal's survival, according to the discussion of plants?

3. What were the dangers of the potato, according to Malthus during the time of the rise of the potato?

4. After a few days of drenching rain, what did the NewLeaf potato plants look like in Pollan's garden?

5. Why are cats so drawn to catnip, according to the research that Pollan does after seeing how his cat response to using this herb?

6. What causes the Great Potato Famine and the many deaths over the area of Europe?

7. Where was marijuana primarily grown up until the early 1980s when the war on drugs began?

8. What has been the recurrent theme about plants which are forbidden by others? What are they supposed to provide?

9. What are some of the possible genetically modified food advances people might see in the future, according to Pollan?

10. Compare and contrast the tastes of plants which are supposed to be eaten with those which are not supposed to be eaten.

(see the answer keys)

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