The Silent Woman: Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes 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 university did Janet Malcolm attend?

2. Who was the consulting editor on The Journals of Sylvia Plath?

3. What did Sylvia Plath leave for her children when they awoke the night she killed herself?

4. How did Sylvia Plath commit suicide?

5. To what friend of the Hughes was William Stanley Merwin married?

Short Essay Questions

1. What friend of Sylvia Plath's commented negatively about her life and death in Part One: Chapter II?

2. When were Ted and Sylvia separated? What did Sylvia reveal to Alvarez during that time?

3. Describe the house Sylvia rented in London. What were her impressions of the residence?

4. What was Anne Stevenson's response at a meeting of the University Women's Club in London where she was being taken to task for her portrayal of Sylvia in her book?

5. What portrait of Sylvia Plath did Anne Stevenson paint in her biography of Sylvia? Why did critics refute that image?

6. What did Ted Hughes write in the second edition introduction of The Journals of Sylvia Plath? When was it published?

7. What struggle did Ted face after the death of Sylvia Plath?

8. Which biography of Sylvia Plath did Malcolm find to be the best? What criticism did the book meet?

9. What qualities of Sylvia Plath's work made her appealing to feminists?

10. How did Sylvia's demeanor and image change from her youth to her death?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss A. Alvarez and his critical response to the book Bitter Fame. What did Alvarez's review state about the work?

Essay Topic 2

Describe Sylvia Plath's relationship with Richard Sassoon. When did they meet? How long did they have a relationship? What ended it?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the coming-of-age period during the 1950s of Sylvia Plath. How did the public and critics respond to Plath's poetry? What impact did she have on women during the period in which the feminist movement began?

(see the answer keys)

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