The Comedians Test | Final 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. Why do the Smiths decide to stay and pursue the building of the vegetarian center?

2. At the casino with Luigi, whom does Brown see from the ship?

3. When Brown hears footsteps outside his hotel, what weapon does he grab?

4. Before beginning work on the vegetarian center, what does the Secretary for Social Welfare want from Mr. Smith?

5. Why is it safe for Brown to leave the cemetery, but not Jones?

Short Essay Questions

1. In order to leave the Medea to travel to the British embassy, Jones dresses as a woman. What is the effect of this costume? How does it reflect on Jones?

2. According to Doctor Magiot in Part 2, Chapter 1, what role does Voodoo play in Haitian culture? What is its relation to Catholicism?

3. Young Philipot, who visits Brown while he is swimming one early afternoon, is consumed with the idea of owning a Bren gun and fighting Papa Doc's army with it. In his idealism, what other character does he resemble and why?

4. When Jones and Brown board the Medea so Jones can ask for asylum, Brown describes the ship's captain like a judge. What is the effect of this appearance? Is this the first time a judge figure has appeared in the book? How does this contrast to Haitian culture?

5. While lying in bed in the Hotel Trianon, Martha notes to brown that their relationship is no longer an adventure. What are the signs of this change? What are their choices for the future?

6. From even their first meeting, Brown hesitates to address Jones as "Major Jones." How does this begin to explain Jones's character? How does it prepare the reader for the revelation that Jones has never even seen a man die?

7. Why do Mr. and Mrs. Smith refer several times to their experience in Nashville? Brown wonders this himself, when Mrs. Smith references that incident in order to win an argument with her husband.

8. Why do the Smiths change their minds about opening a vegetarian center? How does the Secretary for Social Welfare misunderstand Mr. Smith?

9. When Jones realizes that Captain Conasseur is curious about his actions, he comes to Brown's hotel in a panic. What does this tell us about Jones's plan to get rich? How prepared is he to deal with the Tonton Macoutes?

10. The second time Brown visits the casino, the place is drastically changed from the night he met Martha. How is it different? What does this signal about Haiti's economy?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Smiths are devoted to the idea of the vegetarian center, even when Haitian reality tells them that it will never happen. They are clinging to the dream in the face of truth. Where else does this happen in the novel? Who is clinging to dream that can never become reality?

Essay Topic 2

Examine Brown from a literary standpoint. As the narrator of the story, is he reliable? What advantages are there in telling the story from his standpoint? Is he able to provide an advantage which an omniscient narrator might not? How does his viewpoint color the entire story?

Essay Topic 3

Of his relationship with Martha, Brown says, "Like some wines, our love could neither mature nor travel." Find examples in the text which illustrate this. How was their love bound to the moment? How were they bound to Haiti? What clues tell the reader that their love will not last?

(see the answer keys)

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