The Contender 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. Alfred dropped out of school in what grade?

2. Where does Alfred go to find his friend in Chapter 1?

3. When Alfred was young, he and his friend imagined being wrestlers. Who was Alfred going to be?

4. What is Alfred's last name?

5. What character harasses Alfred for wearing street clothes, even though he doesn't have anything else to wear while exercising, in Chapter 6?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why does Alfred not back down against the thugs in Chapter 8? How does he feel about this interaction?

2. What is Aunt Pearl's reaction to Alfred's news of training as a boxer in Chapter 9?

3. Who intercepts Alfred on his way home following the robbery in Chapter 1? What news does Alfred learn?

4. What leads up to Alfred entering Donatelli's gym in Chapter 2?

5. What is juxtaposed against Alfred's home life in Chapter 4? What contrast is illustrated?

6. What does Alfred recall about his childhood and James in Chapter 7?

7. Where is Alfred in the beginning of Chapter 1? Where does he go to look for James? How does Alfred feel about James?

8. How does Alfred's relationship with Henry develop in Chapter 7?

9. How does Alfred feel about his friendship with James in Chapter 10? What effect does this have on his training?

10. How is the fight described in Chapter 7?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Analyze and discuss the author's use of symbolism in the narrative. How does the author use symbolism to illustrate the theme of racism? What is symbolic in the setting of Donatelli's? What does Mr. Donatelli represent to Alfred?

Essay Topic 2

Analyze and discuss the theme of family in the novel. How is family illustrated at Donatelli's gym? How is this theme expressed through symbolism in the narrative? How does Alfred relate to his family?

Essay Topic 3

Describe and discuss the setting of the clubhouse. How does the clubhouse represent temptation for Alfred? Also discuss Alfred's actions in Chapter 11. What are the repercussions of Alfred's actions?

(see the answer keys)

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