The Idiot Test | Final 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. What reason does Myshkin give Aglaya for him coming to Pavlovsk?

2. What illness does Hippolite have?

3. Why does Hippolite realize, after seeing Rogozhin in his room at night, that Rogozhin couldn't have been there?

4. What does Nastassya ask Myshkin?

5. What does Hippolite say he is going to read?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Madam Yephanchin react, after Burdovsky and his companions object to the information Ganja reveals about Burdovsky?

2. Why does Hippolite want to kill himself?

3. How does General Ivolgin act when he talks to Myshkin after his argument with Lebedev?

4. How does Myshkin feel, when he gets to Madam Yephanchin and is sitting at the table with Aglaya and the other guests?

5. What does Aglaya say to Myshkin, after her proposal to him?

6. What does Keller ask Myshkin for?

7. How does Myshkin answer Nastassya's question to him, and what is Rogozhin's response?

8. Why does Burdovsky feel he is owed something from Myshkin?

9. What leads up to the violence in the park?

10. How does Aglaya react to winning and losing at games?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss fate in the novel.

1) What forces, both within the characters themselves and outside the characters, dictate the paths that the characters' lives take in the novel? To what extent are the characters able to make choices about their lives and control their own destinies?

2) In the novel, there are moments of prophecy, as when Myshkin predicts that Nastassya will marry Rogozhin, and then Rogozhin will murder her. What do these moments of prophecy say about fate and destiny in the novel?

3) Could the novel have ended in any other way, for these particular characters in this particular society?

Essay Topic 2

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?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the values of St. Petersburg society that are revealed in the novel.

1) What are the professed values of the characters in the novel? How do they express their professed values?

2) What values are revealed by the characters' actions? How are the values the characters live by different from the values they profess?

3) How are Myshkin's value and style of living different from the values of St. Petersburg society? How does Myshkin reveal the values of St. Petersburg society, by comparison?

(see the answer keys)

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