The Portable Beat Reader 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. The Beat Generation started off in what city?

2. Where was Gary Snyder born?

3. Whose death is "Thou Shalt Not Kill" written in mourning of?

4. What is Jack Kerouac's fictionalized name in the novel Go?

5. What is the name of the girl Kerouac describes meeting in "The Subterraneans"?

Short Essay Questions

1. What political references are made in the poem "America"?

2. Describe the poetry of Gregory Corso, including subject and themes.

3. Who is Lawrence Ferlinghetti? What is his role in the Beat movement? What is his poem "Dog" about?

4. Describe the exposition from the beginning excerpt of "On the Road." Who are the characters introduced?

5. How do Cassady and Kerouac differ on their perspective of Cassady's childhood?

6. What are Herbert Huncke's contributions in the anthology? On what subjects does he focus?

7. What does Ann Charters write of the origination of the Beats in the Introduction?

8. Where does Jack Kerouac refer to his own style of writing in "On the Road"? What metaphor does the author make?

9. In his letters to Kerouac, what is Cassady's description of how he lost his old girlfriend Joan in Denver?

10. Describe Huncke's depictions of sexuality in his work.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Describe the poets Gary Snyder and Philip Whalen. Where did these poets meet? How did they become associated with the Beat Generation?

Essay Topic 2

Describe the Beat icon Neal Cassady. When was he born and when did he die? What was his family like? How did he meet the other Beats? What was the general opinion of Cassady?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the impact that the members of the Beat Generation had on those around them, as expressed in "Tales of Beatnik Glory." What were their families like?

(see the answer keys)

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