The Dharma Bums Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. To what do Ray's mother and sister want him to return?

2. What is the first name of Japhy's sister who comes to visit?

3. Ray realizes, "it was _____ not the void that changed."

4. What was the name of the truck driver Ray rode with all the way up to Crescent City because the driver said he was lonely and wanted the company?

5. What does Ray find outside of his cabin in the morning that makes him wonder if anyone can spot anything?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Within the friendship of Ray and Japhys lies gray area in which they are not as friendly as they seem, at times.

Part 1: Describe Ray's feelings towards Japhys throughout the novel. How do they change? What is the eventual feeling Ray has for Japhy?

Part 2: How might one describe the relationship between these two men?

Part 3: Does the relationship between these two men seem to be convincing? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

Not surprisingly, one of the main themes in "The Dharma Bums" is the idea of non-conformity. This makes sense, given the time period in which Kerouac wrote.

Part 1: How is the theme of non-conformity expressed in this manuscript?

Part 2: Is there one person who seems to be more non-conformist than the rest? Why did you choose the person you did?

Part 3: If everyone is non-conformist, then can anyone truly be non-conformist? Isn't conforming to non-conformity problematic?

Essay Topic 3

In a sense, one could say that Japhy and Ray are 'fighting' a war against the traditional culture and the way 'normal' people live their lives.

Part 1: Describe the culture Japhy and Ray want to oppose in the way they live their lives.

Part 2: Why do Japhy and Ray oppose the way one particular class lives their lives?

Part 3: What do you think Japhy and Ray see as the best possible way of living one's life?

(see the answer keys)

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