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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. What illness does Prince Myshkin suffer from?
2. Where does Rogozhin invite Prince Myshkin?
3. Who gets fired in Ferdyshchenko's story?
4. What happens to Ganja, after Nastassya gives up Rogozhin's money?
5. What does Rogozhin give to Nastassya?
Short Essay Questions
1. Why does Lebedev consult a doctor, and what does that doctor tell him?
2. What does Nastassya say initially to Myshkin's proposal?
3. How does the footman treat Prince Myshkin when he first arrives at the Yephanchins' house?
4. What does Ganja report about Burdovsky's relationship with Pavlishtchev?
5. What does Keller ask Myshkin for?
6. What does Myshkin feel when he gets off the train arriving in St. Petersburg?
7. How would Myshkin probably act, if he were in Lebedev's place in the disagreement between Lebedev and General Ivolgin?
8. How did Rogozhin become estranged from his father?
9. How does Myshkin act when he gets to the society party where he is to meet Princess Bielokonski?
10. What reason does Yephanchin say he has to be guilty over someone's death?
Essay Topic 1
Throughout the novel, characters communicate private messages through letters. Discuss the role of letters in the novel.
1) Why do characters use letters to communicate? What types of messages do the characters communicate through letters?
2) How do the intentions of letter-writers and the meanings interpreted by readers differ? Why? What does this say about communication in the novel?
3) How do letters being read by unintended audiences or not delivered affect the course of the story?
Essay Topic 2
Myshkin and Rogozhin are the two main male characters in the novel, and they are contrasted in many ways. Discuss the similarities and differences between Rogozhin and Myshkin.
1) How are Myshkin and Rogozhin physically different? How are their social positions and possessions different? What do these differences indicate about their characters?
2) Compare Myshkin and Rogozhins' responses to others. How do they react to perceived wrongs? How do they react to the forces of society and individuals that influence their behaviors?
3) Why do Myshkin and Rogozhin become close, so that Myshkin greets Rogozhin as a brother? Why does Rogozhin go to Myshkin at the end of the novel after he's killed Nastassya? In what ways are the men similar, and what bond do they share?
Essay Topic 3
Discuss beauty and women in the novel.
1) How do the characters treat beautiful women differently from women who are not beautiful, or who are less beautiful? How is beauty valued in the society and by Myshkin?
2) Why is Nastassya introduced to Myshkin first by a picture? What does Myshkin know about Nastassya, based on her picture? How does Nastassya's beauty affect her life and her character?
3) How does Aglaya's beauty affect her life and her character? Does it change her personality? How would her life be different if she were not beautiful?
This section contains 2,503 words
(approx. 9 pages at 300 words per page)