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. Where does Ray go when he is accused of drinking too much?

2. What does Ray learn how to dig when he undergoes his training as a fire spotter?

3. What is the last name of the character in the answer to #139?

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

5. Who notices Ray's peculiar habit of spending long periods alone in the woods?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

The suicide of Rosie is a tragic part of this story, though it seems to be a necessary evil within the story as well.

Part 1: Describe the circumstances of Rosie's suicide.

Part 2: Who might be to blame for her suicide? Who might have been able to stop her?

Part 3: What are the consequences of Rosie's suicide?

Essay Topic 2

The theme of simplicity is another obvious idea that is tested and acknowledged as the story continues.

Part 1: What are Ray's ideas about simplicity? What are Japhy's ideas about simplicity?

Part 2: What are some examples of Ray and Japhy's adherence to simplicity?

Part 3: Why is living simply preferable to living any other way, according to these characters?

Essay Topic 3

The idea of sexuality is one that is explored at different points of the story, but Ray's own feelings about sexuality seem to be conflicted.

Part 1: How does Ray respond to the idea of the yabyum idea? Does his reaction seem to fall in line with its definition or with his own sense of lust and longing?

Part 2: Ray seems to practice celibacy in most of the story, preferring to avoid sexual contact altogether. Is this a moralistic choice of a defense mechanism? Why do you say what you do?

Part 3: What does the story as a whole seem to say about sex? Is it a good thing? A bad thing? Spiritual? Abhorrent?

(see the answer keys)

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