The Labyrinth of Solitude: Life and Thought in Mexico Test | Final Test - Medium

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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. Why was Diaz's regime in a precarious position regarding positivist philosophy?
(a) Because only about half the regime favored the philosophy.
(b) Because it could not afford to support such a philosophy when the regime itself was so new.
(c) Because the common people vehemently opposed the philosophy.
(d) Because it adopted rather than fathered the philosophy.

2. What metaphor does Paz use to describe Mexico taking control from Spain?
(a) A lion cub overtaking its elderly parent.
(b) A corpse dismembered and a nation born.
(c) A young man finally realizing his strength.
(d) A phoenix rising from the ashes.

3. Why did the Spaniards not exterminate the Indians after they were conquered?
(a) They wanted to learn from the Indians.
(b) They respected the Indians.
(c) Their Catholicism prevented mass slaughter.
(d) They needed labor.

4. In Paz's philosophy, why must Mexicans face reality alone?
(a) They have alienated themselves from the world.
(b) The modern world no longer has any ideas.
(c) They are not in step with the rest of the intellectual world.
(d) They do not have a comprehensive philosophy of the self.

5. What was the motto of positivism?
(a) "The Spirit Shall Speak through My Race".
(b) "Love, Order, and Progress".
(c) "Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity".
(d) "Thus Shall We Live".

Short Answer Questions

1. Who authored. the book, Profile of Man and Culture in Mexico?

2. What did the Revolution force the Mexican people to do?

3. What did Manuel Gomez-Morin accomplish for the Revolution?

4. When did Spain begin to lose her hold on Mexico?

5. According to Paz, why did the Revolution become a compromise?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why could Mexico not have progressed as far as she has today if she were working within capitalism?

2. How did Catholicism reduce the Indian converts into passive believers? How was that a significant blow?

3. Pulling from the ideas of Jose Gaos, Paz, speaks of the physical duality in Mexico. What does that mean? What significance does that idea have?

4. What role did religion play in ancient South American cultures? Did Catholicism change that role?

5. Why did the new Constitution mandate that education be secular? How might that have made the Mexicans feel?

6. How does Paz explain the suicides of the Aztec people? Is it a reasonable explanation?

7. Mexico has entered a new phase of thinking and history. How does Paz explain that phase?

8. What happened when Spanish America separated itself from Spain? Given what Paz has stated throughout the book about that moment in history, draw your own conclusions about why that happened.

9. Who was Sor Juana? Why was she an unusual person both in South America and in old Spain?

10. How does Paz define "Mexicanism"? How does it mesh with the individual whom he had described earlier?

(see the answer keys)

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