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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. Whom does Werther find in the square of the town Werther has come to love?
2. What effect does Lotte's continued presence have on Werther?
3. In his letter of May 17, what does Werther find the state of humanity to be?
4. What is the name of the first woman mentioned by the main character?
5. Which person considers Werther's conduct with the children to be below Werther's social station?
Short Essay Questions
1. What is the substance of the conversation between Werther and his companions at the vicar's home?
2. How does Werther describe his delight in the countryside surrounding Wahlheim?
3. What specific space, which Werther found in his explorations of the town, does he find pleasurable?
4. How has Werther's life or attitudes changed after falling in love with Lotte?
5. What does Werther ask his friend Wilhelm not to do, and why?
6. What activities does Werther engage in now that he is away from his friends and in a new town?
7. How does Werther meet Lotte?
8. What does Werther find appealing about being away from his friends and in a new town?
9. What "worthy man" has Werther gotten to know, and where does he live?
10. To what does Werther compare Lotte's influence on him in the letter of July 26, and what the effects of her influence upon him?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
Discuss the role the Editor plays in the novel. Is this another character, or can you consider it the direct voice of Goethe himself? How does the narrative and discursive style change from the majority of the novel to when the Editor takes over from Werther's letters? How does first-person present narration differ from third-person omniscient? How do you balance these types of narration, since the editor not only commentates Werther's letters and Lotte and Albert's interactions, but he includes Werther's letters as well? How do you think the Editor makes these interpretations? What goes "unsaid" in the portions of his narration where the Editor expresses these interpretations of the characters' innermost thoughts and feelings? How reliable do you think these interpretations are--and how reliable of a narrator do you feel the Editor is? What effect does the Editor have on the overall development of the characters?
Essay Topic 2
Trace the foreshadowing of suicide and death throughout the novel. Using at least four examples from all through the text, examine the progression of Werther's mania and depression to its culmination. In what sorts of situations does Werther refer to suicide? What kinds of emotions or thoughts does he experience in these situations? Is there a common thread running among these experiences of his? How do the opinions of others, and Werther's interactions with them, influence his thoughts and ultimately his final decision?
Essay Topic 3
Compare and contrast the two lovelorn young men Werther meets: the farmer-boy who fell in love with his mistress and murdered his other servant, and the madman named Heinrich roaming around the water's edge looking for flowers. What has caused the situations the two men find themselves in? What are their reasons, excuses, interpretations and plans? How do their situations and Goethe's characterization of them relate to Werther--that is, in which ways are they notably similar and different? How does Werther interpret his encounters with the two men? Is there any form of irony present in their characterizations, their narratives, or their fates?
This section contains 978 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)