The Underground Railroad (novel) Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Colson Whitehead
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 117 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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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. Who is described as the head of the kitchen workers in "Georgia"?

2. What is Dr. Stevens's first name?

3. What is the date of the wanted notice that opens "North Carolina"?

4. Why does the narrator say that the captain of the slave ship that brought Ajarry from her homeland staggered the culture and disposition of the slaves he peddled?

5. How many times did Ajarry marry?

Short Essay Questions

1. Who is Mr. Lumbly and how is his home described?

2. Why does the author introduce certain chapters in the novel with "Reward" postings?

3. How are the motifs of darkness and light explored in "North Carolina"?

4. How are Cora and Caesar greeted when they arrive in South Carolina?

5. What is Cora's job at the Museum of Natural Wonders?

6. Discuss the narrative style of the novel. From what point of view is the narrative related? What effects does this narrative style have?

7. Who is Bessie and how is she described in "South Carolina"?

8. What are the implications of James Randall's death?

9. How does Cora come to feel about her mother as the novel progresses?

10. What led to Cora becoming a "stray"? What does this term mean in the narrative?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the portrayal of the Underground Railroad in the novel. Why do you think the author has chosen to present the Underground Railroad as a literal railroad? How does this presentation alter history? How is the railroad accessed by the escaping slaves?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the author's use of irony in The Underground Railroad. What are examples of verbal irony used in the novel? What are examples of dramatic and situational irony? What purpose do these examples serve to the story?

Essay Topic 3

Compare and contrast the characters of Ajarry and Mabel in the novel. How is Mabel similar to her mother? How is she different? What do the actions of these characters reveal about them?

(see the answer keys)

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