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

2. What is Radomsky's view of liberalism?

3. At the beginning of Part III, Chapter VI, what decor from Rogozhin's home does Hippolite talk about?

4. Who does Myshkin stop one of the officer friends of the Yephanshins from hitting?

5. What does Myshkin say, when Aglaya asks him to marry her in Part IV, Chapter V?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Myshkin learn that Nastassya is in town?

2. What does Madam Yephanchin think about, as she brings Myshkin to her house?

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

4. How do Myshkin and Agalya each interpret Myshkin's earlier letter to Agalya?

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

6. What does Myskhin's view of dueling seem to be?

7. How do the guests at the Yephanchins' react to Myshkin's response to Radomsky's political views?

8. What happens when Hippolite tries to kill himself?

9. What is Ganja's attitude toward his father?

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Much of the action in the novel happens at parties and social gatherings. Discuss the importance of parties and social gatherings in the novel.

1) Why does so much of the action of the novel take place at parties and social gatherings? How do the characters react differently in these social situations, than in private?

2) What role do parties and social gatherings fulfill in the culture of St. Petersburg? How do they affect the social relationships and social order of the characters?

3) How are events at parties and social gatherings reviewed and critiqued by the people attending the gatherings? How does this change the consequences of those events, which are witnessed by groups of people?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the role of family in the characters' lives.

1) How do the characters' families and social positions affect their lives? How do family relationships affect how the characters are accepted by society?

2) How does it affect Nastassya that her parents are killed when she is young? How do the characters' upbringings affect their personalities and attitudes?

3) How do the characters' families try to influence the characters' lives and decisions? What forces do families use to influence family members' behavior.

Essay Topic 3

Discuss religion in the novel.

1) What stories do the characters tell about religion and about God? What do these stories mean? Why does the author include them in the novel?

2) What do Myshkin and Rogozhin say about the religious painting in Rogozhin's house? What is the significance of the painting? Does it reveal anything about Rogozhin's relationship to religion? What about the crosses that the two men exchange? What is the religious significance of the crosses?

3) How does Myshkin react when he learns his benefactor turned to Catholicism before his death? What does this say about Myshkin's attitude toward religion? How is Myshkin's attitude toward religion different than the other characters' attitudes?

(see the answer keys)

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