The Masterpiece 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. What is it about Claude's use of colors that Christine has difficulty understanding?

2. What does an old man in the woods offer Claude and Christine?

3. How has Claude's past prepared him for living in the country?

4. What does she notice about Claude's Open Air painting?

5. Where does Claude go for a cheap lunch?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe how Claude further distances himself from Christine and Jacques.

2. Discuss Claude's conversations with Christine that show he is more and more dissatisfied.

3. What indicates that Claude would be perfectly happy just to see Christine from time to time rather than have her move in with him?

4. After returning to Paris, what indicates that Claude is taking Christine for granted and no longer has a romantic love for her?

5. What is Claude's behavior after a party at Sandoz's house that alarms Christine?

6. Describe Claude's continuing struggle to be accepted by the art circles in Paris.

7. Explain how Claude turns on Christine as the reason his grand painting is not coming together for him.

8. What is the pathos of Claude's funeral?

9. Explain the result of Claude's and Christine's visit to the country.

10. What is the scene in the the Café Baudequin that adds to the image of defeat for the open air school of thought?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Write a critique of the novel. Discuss Zola's style and use of language, giving specific examples. Include the autobiographical nature of Sandoz as Zola himself. Express how you feel about the suspense of the novel and whether it makes you not want to put it down. Conclude with your recommendation for others to read THE MASTERPIECE.

Essay Topic 2

Write an essay of at least two typed, double-spaced pages on the topic of contradictory moral values during the 19th century. Use Henriette and Christine versus Irma and Mathilde to point out these contradictions. Be sure to include how Christine manages to maintain her moral character even though she lives many years with Claude before they are married. Also include how Irma is tolerated in polite society whereas Christine is the subject of gossip and condemnation.

Essay Topic 3

Write an essay of at least two typed, double-spaced pages on the topic of Foreshadowing Claude's Death. In Chapter 11, there are passages where Sandoz fears for Claude's life, Christine has a "dread she dared not put into words," and Claude recognizes "desire hovering on the brink of blissful death." With those as the main points of the essay, write about what each of them means as a foreshadowing.

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