The Labyrinth of Solitude: Life and Thought in Mexico Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What familial relationship does Paz equate with solitude?

2. Why does the modern novelist rarely choose the worker as his protagonist?

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

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

5. Paz discusses the result of persecution on the pachuco. What is that result?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the character of the Mexican's solitude? How does it differ from the solitude of the North American?

2. Why was the Aztec nation able to unify so many diverse tribes? How were they quite skilled with that type of action?

3. How important are fiestas in Mexican culture? What relationship exists between the fiesta and the individual?

4. "Is death the truest kind of life" (Chapter Nine, page 196)? What does that question mean in the context of the chapter?

5. According to Alarcon, why does the liar lie to himself? Given what you know of the Mexican mindset, does that make sense?

6. What mutual problem do both the Mexican and the North American face? What is the solution to that problem?

7. How does North American culture view the pachuco? Does the pachuco accept or reject that culture's perception of him?

8. What is the origin of the pachuco? How does that characterization prepare the reader for the rest of the book?

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

10. What does Paz say about the national differences among Central and South American nations? How does that tie into their relationship with Spain?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

What is the Mexican view of privacy? Why does Paz defend it at such cost? What part does lying play in his defense? Is that accepted?

Essay Topic 2

Use this quote as the foundation for your essay: "We have been expelled from the center of the world, and are condemned to search for it through jungles and deserts or in the underground mazes of the labyrinth.

Essay Topic 3

In Paz's arguments, how important is the Mexican sense of place? What affects it? What is its most important aspect? Explain the sense of place in the greater context of the Mexican mindset that Paz presents throughout the book.

(see the answer keys)

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