The Master Puppeteer 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. Who wears baskets on their heads?

2. What is Teiji's problem?

3. How is Minoru described?

4. What does Jiro offer to do for Kenshi?

5. Who is Fusamu?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Okada respond to Jiro's question?

2. What does Jiro decide to do and why does he make this decision?

3. What does Jiro hope about his father and what is the outcome?

4. How is Jiro's family getting along?

5. Who posts the roles for the new play and what is Jiro's role?

6. How do Jiro and the other boys feel about Jiro's assignment?

7. Where do Jiro and his father go and spend their money, and who do they talk to there?

8. Who does Jiro meet at the theater and what does the person tell Jiro?

9. What do Jiro and Kinshi get to do on stage during one performance?

10. How does Jiro help his father and how does this help his family?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Characters are an important part of what makes The Master Puppeteer interesting. Discuss the following:

1. Thoroughly discuss and analyze Jiro. What are his strengths? His weaknesses? How does he contribute to the plot? Is he a sympathetic character? Is he always likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

2. Thoroughly discuss and analyze Kinshi. What are his strengths? His weaknesses? How does he contribute to the plot? Is he a sympathetic character? Is he always likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

3. Thoroughly discuss and analyze the character of Saburo. What are his strengths? His weaknesses? How does he contribute to the plot? Is he a sympathetic character? Is he ever likable? Never likable? Use specific examples to illustrate your ideas.

Essay Topic 2

In this story, the gap between people's wealth and their social position is particularly large. This is because it is a time of famine, and the farmers are forced to give most of their food to the daimyos. The rice merchants have grown extremely rich while the farmers and other peasants are poor and starving. The samurai might be considered very important on the social scale, but Jiro tells us that even some of the samurai are starving on very small rice stipends. This has made people very angry and restless, as the lowliest and undeserving members of society, the merchants are getting rich and fat while those who should be more important starve. The famine has only made these feelings worse, and has caused the peasants of the city to become desperate.

1. Compare a day in the life of a peasant with a day in the life of a Lord in feudal Japan. Use examples from The Master Puppeteer to support your reasoning.

2. Do you think the rice merchants have an obligation to feed the masses? Why or why not? Use examples from The Master Puppeteer to support your reasoning.

3. What kinds of behaviors do you think desperate, starving people will display and how does starvation of the masses enter into many revolutions in countries? Use examples from The Master Puppeteer to support your reasoning.

Essay Topic 3

Over the course of The Master Puppeteer, Jiro grows as a person in both complexity and understanding. The Master Puppeteer might be considered a slice of Jiro's larger story of his "coming of age." It might be said that The Master Puppeteer is a "bildungsroman" of Jiro. Discuss the following:

1. Define Bildungsroman, or "Coming of Age," and give several examples from literature you have read.

2. Trace and analyze the character of Jiro as he changes from a more carefree, innocent boy to a wiser, young man. What are the significant events that change Rick?

3. After thoroughly analyzing Jiro's growth throughout The Master Puppeteer, do you think The Master Puppeteer could be considered Jiro's Coming of Age story? Why or why not?

4. Are there any other characters in The Master Puppeteer who go through a Coming of Age experience? Who? Why do you think so?

(see the answer keys)

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