The Undertaking: Life Studies from the Dismal Trade Test | Lesson Plans Mid-Book Test - Hard

Thomas Lynch
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 124 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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Mid-Book Test - Hard

Name: _________________________ Period: ___________________

This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. How much would the laundry bill have come to for the work Milo did for Lynch?

2. How did Jessica Mitford refer to undertakers' work on human bodies?

3. In what month did the Michigan undertakers conduct their conference?

4. What ancient human ancestor did Lynch say first buried the dead?

5. On what holy day did Lynch land in Ireland when Nora became sick?

Short Essay Questions

1. What kind of music did Lynch want at his funeral?

2. Describe Matthew Sweeney's personality.

3. Why did the Lynch brothers take care of their father's body rather than allow a local undertaker to do the job?

4. How does Lynch view the current state of debate over abortion?

5. Why did Lynch say some cultural groups (immigrant Irish, Diaspora Jews, African-Americans) actually"enjoy" funerals?

6. How did Lynch handle being a father while serving as an undertaker and seeing dead children?

7. How did the funeral processions through town change when the Oak Grove bridge collapsed?

8. How did the modern amenities (toilet, television, etc.) change life in the old Irish cottage?

9. According to Lynch, why do people find it important to have bodies to bury?

10. What lesson did Lynch want to teach Sweeney with his story of the man killed by the falling vehicle at the scrap metal yard?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the significance of Stephanie's tragic death. Recall that the name on the stone that killed her was the same as the one on the stone next to which she was buried. Was that significant? Was it merely chance or did it provide some insight into the role of faith and coincidence? Discuss the individual choices mentioned by Lynch (the hand of God, the devil did it, etc.). Are any of them satisfactory? Could all of them be right?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss the assisted suicide doctor, Jack Kevorkian. Why were so many people willing to allow him to "assist" them in killing themselves? How does Lynch view the notion of providing someone with assistance in suicide? How did the general public react to Kevorkian and why was he not convicted? Is there an absolute value of life or can society reach an agreement about when people may choose to end theirs?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss Uncle Eddie's suicide cleanup business (note: there are actual businesses that focus on cleaning up scenes of violent deaths, including suicides and murders). How did Eddie's business provide society with a valuable service? How did the cleanup after these deaths usually get done before such services? How is it an act of kindness for an outsider to clean up the scene so that loved ones do not have to see it? How does this relate to the general services provided by funeral parlors and undertakers?

(see the answer keys)

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