The Labyrinth of Solitude: Life and Thought in Mexico Test | Mid-Book 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. Through dissimulation, what does a Mexican attempt to do?

2. Chapter Three begins with the great effect that fiestas and public celebrations have. What is this effect?

3. How is the myth of the "long-suffering Mexican woman" created?

4. How does the pachuco present himself to the people around him?

5. What is the Spanish view of women in contrast to the Mexican?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who is the Virgin of Guadalupe? How is she an important part of Mexican identity?

2. How did the Aztecs view sin? How does that idea explain the Conquest? What enormous change did Catholicism introduce?

3. What were Paz's impressions of the United States? How does that contrast with the literature being written? In your mind, what accounts for the discrepancy?

4. Who represents the conflict that Mexicans have not been able to solve? What effect does that conflict have on their culture?

5. When does Paz say that a nation questions itself? Is it necessary?

6. In the author's parable, who is Nobody? Is it possible for Nobody to break the progression of his existence? Why or why not?

7. Who is the Chingada? What relation does she hold to every Mexican, whether male or female?

8. How do Mexicans view their bodies? How does their view contribute to their wish for privacy?

9. Why does the Mexican love Form? Other than in personal relationships, how does that idea express itself?

10. What group of people did the author have in mind as he wrote the book? How and why did those people become important to him?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

What are the varieties of chingar that the author explains? Does that help your comprehension of the word? Does it enrich your understanding of Mexican culture?

Essay Topic 2

Find the deaths that are mentioned in the book. According to the Mexican criterion for a worthy death - the death suits the life - how many of those people died a worthy death? How many of them died a death that did not suit their lives?

Essay Topic 3

Does Paz's writing style mirror the subject? When is he vociferous? When does it feel that he is holding something back?

(see the answer keys)

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