The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Rebecca Skloot
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. When did Joe Lacks turn himself into the police for the murder of Eldridge Lee Ivy?
(a) August 20, 1972.
(b) October 4, 1969.
(c) September 29, 1970.
(d) February 5, 1951.

2. What was the name of Henrietta Lacks's father?
(a) Johnny Pleasant.
(b) Tommy Lacks.
(c) William Lacks.
(d) David Lacks.

3. What nickname did Dr. Richard Wesley TeLinde have at John's Hopkins in the 1950s?
(a) Uncle Dick.
(b) Bugs Bunny.
(c) Father Richard.
(d) Mussolini.

4. How old was Deborah Lacks when she became pregnant with her first child?
(a) 13.
(b) 14.
(c) 16.
(d) 15.

5. What researcher at the NIH used HeLa cells to develop the first standardized culture medium that could be made by the gallon and shipped ready to use?
(a) Charles Bynum.
(b) Roland Pattillo.
(c) Harry Eagle.
(d) Roland Pattillo.

Short Answer Questions

1. Who coerced Deborah to continue at an all-girls' school after she became pregnant with her first child?

2. What was the name of the BBC documentary that Courtney Speed borrowed from the library to show to Rebecca Skloot when she visited Turner Station?

3. Where was researcher Chester Southam the chief virologist in 1954 when he began injecting cancer patients with HeLa cells?

4. When was Henrietta Lacks born?

5. What date was inscribed to indicate when Henrietta's mother died on her tombstone?

Short Essay Questions

1. What diagnosis did the doctors from Johns Hopkins reach regarding Henrietta's condition after her first visit? What treatment was available at this time for her condition?

2. What precedent was set by the 1957 case of patient Martin Salgo?

3. What was discovered during Henrietta Lacks's autopsy? Where had Henrietta's cancer spread?

4. How is Henrietta Lacks's early childhood described in the book? When and where was she born? Where did she grow up?

5. What led to the trial against Southam and Mendel? What sentence did the men receive?

6. How were tissue samples obtained following Henrietta Lacks's death? Why were they obtained?

7. Describe the genre and narrative style of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. From whose perspective is the narrative related?

8. How does the author describe Courtney Speed in the narrative? What business(es) did Ms. Speed run at the time the author first met her?

9. What were Mary Kubicek's impressions of HeLa cells when she first began observing them? What were George Gey's impressions of the cells?

10. How did Lawrence Lacks deal with the death of his mother? What led Lawrence into the military?

(see the answer keys)

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