The Master Puppeteer Test | Final Test - Hard

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

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Okada ask Jiro to do?

2. What does Jiro worry about concerning his mother?

3. What is going to be the entrance fee for a special showing of "The Thief of the Tokaido"?

4. Who is at the door one night when Jiro and Kinshi hear a banging sound?

5. What does Joman's wife do after he goes to prison?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Jiro's father wants Jiro to be able to help make puppets so they can earn a living, but he also wants Jiro to learn a skill that will help him in later life. Jiro tries his best and feels embarrassed and upset when he makes mistakes. He loves both his parents, but feels a little despairing of ever earning his mother's love. He thinks his mother resents the fact that he was even born, as his elder siblings died. He thinks that his mother would have preferred her other children to survive and Jiro to die. This makes him very sad, but also a little resentful of his mother.

1. Discuss the ways in which Jiro's father might be able to help him with his lack of skill. Use examples from The Master Puppeteer to support your reasoning.

2. Discuss the ways in which Jiro's mother responds to him that might be responsible for him believing she does not love him. Use examples from The Master Puppeteer to support your reasoning.

3. Discuss why Jiro would feel both sad and resentful about his mother. Use examples from The Master Puppeteer to support your reasoning.

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

Many novels, and perhaps a majority, of novels ends on a happy note. Discuss the following:

1. Why do you think many (most?) people want what they perceive as a happy or good ending to a novel? Explain your opinion. Do you? Why or why not?

2. What are three reasons to read fiction? Discuss each one in light of The Master Puppeteer and whether or not it fulfills all three, two or one of the reasons you mention. Give examples as to why The Master Puppeteer is or is not successful in fulfilling the reasons you discuss.

3. Do you think reading solely for entertainment is as good a reason to read as any other? Why or why not? Can any work of fiction or non-fiction, no matter how poorly written, enlighten, teach, stimulate thought? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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