The Promise 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 happens to Michael between the time of his breaking down at the fair and then arriving home?

2. Who has been seeing Rachel more and more?

3. About whom does Rachel ask Reuven?

4. How is Michael doing?

5. Where does Reuven encounter Professor Gordon?

Short Essay Questions

1. What has Reuven's father completed during the Fall and early Winter?

2. How does Reuven know Professor Gordon?

3. What are the narrator's plans for his schooling and what were the influences on his choice?

4. Describe Reuven and Michael's phone conversation.

5. Describe Reuven's visit with Danny.

6. What does Michael say about orthodox Jews?

7. What do Reuven and Professor Gordon discuss about Michael?

8. What does Reuven say about the Hasid?

9. What is the topic of Michael's long-winded monologue to Reuven?

10. How does the narrator's neighborhood change in the early 1950s?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss one of the following:

1. Define irony in literary terms. Discuss the irony of the situation whereby Professor Gordon is at a conservative seminary and David Malter is at a liberal seminary . Find two other incidences of irony in The Promise and discuss them.

2. Define symbolism in literary terms. Discuss the use of and meaning of five symbols found in The Promise.

3. Discuss the use of foreshadowing in literature. What is the purpose of foreshadowing? Cite 3 examples of foreshadowing and how it is used to indicate events to come in The Promise.

Essay Topic 2

Oftentimes, a book is more of a character-driven plot rather than action driven, and oftentimes the other way. Some books seem to balance the two. Discuss the following:

1. What do you think it means to say that a plot is character driven? Action driven?

2. How do you think a plot differs if it is character driven versus action driven?

3. Which type of plot do you find more interesting? Why?

4. Do you think it is possible to have a plot where action and character development share equal time? Why or why not.

5. What type of plot do you think The Promise is? Explain your response.

Essay Topic 3

Kalman reminds Reuven that Professor Gordon was excommunicated and demands that Reuven respect the excommunication by dissociating from Gordon. Discuss the following:

1. What is ex-communication in the Jewish tradition? What are the reasons for ex-communicating someone?

2. Do other religions practice ex-communication? Which ones? What are the reasons for ex-communicating someone?

3. Does ex-communication seem like a good way to deal with a dissenter? Why or why not?

4. How is ex-communication a form of control?

(see the answer keys)

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