The Scalpel and the Silver Bear Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Lori Alvord
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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 did Alvord NOT have that makes it difficult when she wants to apply to medical school?

2. In what state was Dr. Alvord born before she was moved onto the reservation with her parents?

3. For how long is Carolyn missing before Dr. Alvord finds her?

4. Alvord believes that patient _______ are dehumanizing and inharmonious, according to her description.

5. Who states that Dezbah is healed from her surgery, according to this section of the book?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why are end of life decisions difficult for many Navajos to make, according to Alvord's observations?

2. What are some of the roles that a woman may play within the matriarchal society of the Navajo?

3. What was the background of one of Alvord's grandfathers, which allows her grandmother to understand Alvord's conflict?

4. What are the Navajo discouraged from doing in order to become more humble?

5. What could the Navajo people not believe about the disease of cancer, as they had no word for it?

6. What kind of job does Alvord have when she is fourteen and living on the reservation?

7. What is the problem that requires Dezbah Tsosie to have surgery with Alvord?

8. What is one of the most important parts of Navajo healing in the culture?

9. What happens among the Navajo people when Alvord becomes a doctor?

10. What is something Alvord's mother teaches her, though it is not common in the Navajo culture?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Alvord had to make a difficult decision when she left the reservation to attend her school.

Part 1: Why is it difficult for Alvord to leave the reservation?

Part 2: How could Alvord have made the transition smoother for herself and for her family?

Part 3: Do you think it's always necessary to be uncomfortable in order to become successful or educated?

Essay Topic 2

The Navajo people were deeply oppressed by others, causing them to have troubles handling their lives and their feelings about their lives.

Part 1: Why were the Navajo people oppressed by others?

Part 2: How might a people become oppressed by another group of people?

Part 3: Can the Navajo people change the way that others feel about them? Is this their job to do so?

Essay Topic 3

Alvord notices that many surgeons look at human beings like machines, rather than human beings.

Part 1: Why might a surgeon look at a patient like a machine?

Part 2: What is the value of depersonalizing and dehumanizing a surgical patient?

Part 3: How might a surgeon do better work if they look at patients like human beings?

(see the answer keys)

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