The Painted Veil 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 does Charlie think disturbed him and Kitty during their rendezvous in Chapter 1?

2. When Kitty catches Walter's glance through the course of the meal, what expression does she see in his eyes?

3. What reason does Charlie give for being unable to eat his meal?

4. What does Charlie think is the best way to understand a man?

5. Why does Walter have difficulty sleeping when he is subpoenaed for court?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe Charlie Townsend and why Kitty is initially attracted to him when she meets him at the social function.

2. Why is Mr.Garstin reluctant to take silk and become a K.C.?

3. Why does Kitty claim to not care if Walter does "kick up a row" about her affair with Charlie?

4. How does her affair with Charlie affect Kitty's appearance?

5. What reasons does Charlie give for wanting to remain married to Dorothy?

6. Describe Walter's behavior towards others at the dinner party in Chapter 21.

7. What two physical attributes are described of Doris in Chapter 8?

8. What was different about Maugham's writing process on The Painted Veil compared to his other works?

9. What is the view from Kitty's home in Happy Valley?

10. Why does Kitty feel her social position is lower in Hong Kong than it was at home in England?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

When Kitty meets Waddington's mistress she contemplates afterward that "the beliefs and the ideals of the West seemed crude beside ideals and beliefs of which in this exquisite creature she seemed to catch a fugitive glimpse." How does this statement reflect an overarching theme between the relationship between West vs. East as portrayed in The Painted Veil?

Essay Topic 2

Throughout the novel we only receive third-person information about Walter. Using specific descriptions from Kitty and others of Walter, discuss his development as a character. Be sure to reference how his actions in the plot, his dialogue and these third-person descriptions of his emotions and physical appearance support your conclusion.

Essay Topic 3

Early on in the novel, Kitty describes the circumstances leading up to her marriage with Walter. Shortly after the marriage she notes that she became bored and unhappy, however this reflection comes after she is embroiled in an adulterous affair with Charlie. What does this deliberate time-line established by Maugham suggest to the reader about Kitty's impartiality on the subject? Use specific events in her courtship with Walter and in her affair with Charlie to back up your assertions.

(see the answer keys)

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