The Vintage Mencken Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What moral choice faced Mencken and a cop on New Year's Day, in "Recollections of Notable Cops"?
(a) A prostitute bribed the policeman.
(b) A dead man was found with a large sum of money in his pocket.
(c) A man clearly beat his wife, but could not be technically arrested.
(d) They learned about a corrupt policeman, and had to decide whether to turn the man in.

2. What was "The Art Eternal" according to Mencken?
(a) Lying.
(b) Portrait painting.
(c) Prostitution.
(d) Literature.

3. Which was one of Mencken's criticisms for Woodrow Wilson?
(a) He took the presidential office by voter fraud and corruption.
(b) He had "never looked a common man in the eye."
(c) He had the gall to pardon Eugene Debs.
(d) He was stuffy and puritanical.

4. Which was NOT a source of terrible smell in the Baltimore of the 1880s, according to Mencken?
(a) The glue factory.
(b) The St. Helen's insane asylum.
(c) Wilkins Hair Factory.
(d) The Back Basin.

5. What do saints have in common with scientists?
(a) Both simply seek the truth.
(b) Both manipulate public opinion to advance their own position.
(c) Both corrupt the truth to suit their best interests.
(d) Both unselfishly serve mankind.

Short Answer Questions

1. What did Mencken, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, feel about the tradition of giving medals in the military?

2. In "Gore in the Caribees," how was Jose Miguel captured?

3. According to "Text for Newspaper Days," what is modern journalism missing?

4. Why was Theodore Dreiser compared to Franz Schubert by Mencken?

5. What is a man's usual response to beauty?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why do men usually marry women who are "basically hideous"?

2. What criticisms did Mencken have for Theodore Dreiser?

3. What criticisms did Mencken level at General John Pershing?

4. Why are "handsome men" suspicious, according to "The Lure of Beauty"?

5. What was the nature of Mencken's first memory, as described in "Introduction to the Universe"?

6. What is democracy's aim, in "A Blind Spot"? What is a crime in the eyes of democracy?

7. Why did Mencken criticize Woodrow Wilson?

8. How did Mencken answer the question of whether successful men should have mistresses?

9. In "Gore in the Caribees," what becames of the rebel leader, Jose Miguel Gomez?

10. What is the difference between men and women in regards to trust, according to "The Skeptic"?

(see the answer keys)

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