The Content of Our Character: A New Vision of Race in America Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Shelby Steele
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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. According to Steele, what do blacks many times 'overrate their sense of'?
(a) Equality.
(b) Soul.
(c) Belonging.
(d) Worth.

2. How does Steele define the self-descriptions that justify one's fears?
(a) Holdings.
(b) Inflections.
(c) Portraits.
(d) Discoveries.

3. Steele's view said that vulnerability affects what aspects of black life?
(a) Politics and clothing ONLY.
(b) Politics, clothing styles and dance.
(c) Politics ONLY.
(d) Clothing styles and dance ONLY.

4. Dealing with doubt does what for blacks, in Steele's estimation?
(a) Promotes progress.
(b) Hinders progress.
(c) It doesn't have an effect on them.
(d) Sparks anger.

5. What does Steele say is a bad source of recomposition for blacks?
(a) Black nationalism.
(b) White nationalism.
(c) Graduating from institutions of higher learning.
(d) Learning ancestral roots.

Short Answer Questions

1. In terms of 'creating a black identity', what did Steele say is something that blacks engage in?

2. What did Steele say has declined for blacks with respect to whites?

3. What did Steele say pride requires of blacks?

4. At the beginning of Chapter 1, how many of his friends was Steele sipping chardonnay with?

5. On college campuses, blacks many times engage in what type of behavior, in Steele's view?

Short Essay Questions

1. What effect did Steele say integration shock has on blacks' attitude about racism as a whole? How did he say it affects their individual attitudes?

2. Steele talks about forgetting that he is black while writing this book. What did he mean by that?

3. Steele shared his thought that blacks use themes of re-composition to create black identity. What did he say are these themes?

4. According to Steele, the processes that drives one's mind are standard across racial / ethnic lines. Why is this an important observation?

5. How did Steele say the black students in his classes react to discussions of racism?

6. In Chapter 1, Steele said the only way to do away with racial problems is for all to move from a racial consciousness to a moral consciousness. What does that mean?

7. What tool do blacks use to create a tolerable, false sense of reality, in Steele's estimation?

8. In line with Steele's experience, how are individualistic blacks received by those who have conformed to the 'black identity'?

9. What are the three ways that Steele said integration shock manifests as segregation?

10. What caused Steele to experience discrimination in a segregated school?

(see the answer keys)

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