The Vintage Mencken Test | Final 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. To what degree has "new architecture" impacted America?

2. Where did the Scopes monkey trial take place?

3. In "Valentino," what did the press find in a men's bathroom that caused them to mock Valentino and his "Latin Lover" image?

4. What is wrong, in Mencken's opinion, with most artists' depictions of death?

5. Per "Mr. Justice Holmes," which of the following might Mencken say about the legislature as a state organization?

Short Essay Questions

1. According to Mencken in "The Calamity of Appomattox," what would have happened if the Civil War had never happened?

2. What did Mencken conclude about his research into the court cases of Oliver Wendell Holmes?

3. What examples did Mencken provide to support his judgment of Anglo-Saxons?

4. How did Mencken--with tongue firmly in cheek--try to justify a man's murdering of his wife in "A Good Man Gone Wrong"?

5. What opinion was rendered about William Jennings Bryan in "In Memoriam: W.J.B."?

6. What opinion did Mencken have about the English translation of the Bible?

7. Did Mencken's aesthetics conform to the ideals of the "new architecture"? Explain.

8. What was the nature of film actor Valentino's problem, as related in "Valentino"?

9. In "The Noble Experiment," what story did Mencken relate about acquiring alcohol at the Republican National Convention?

10. Why did Mencken take issue with Oliver Wendell Holmes' final court case?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Mencken could be said to operate from an anti-war stance, as in "Star-Spangled Man."

A) How does Mencken make this bias clear? Cite examples from the text.

B) What is Mencken's opinion of World War I? How was the war started? Why might it have been prevented?

C) Is Mencken's anti-war bias explicit or implicit? Cite examples.

Essay Topic 2

Mencken was interested in reviving an American intellectual movement.

A) Who were the forefathers of this movement? What texts are important?

B) What does Mencken feel is the current state of the American intellectual movement?

C) What can be done to further the movement?

Essay Topic 3

"Gore in the Caribees" had Mencken doing some foreign reporting in Cuba.

A) What is Mencken's opinion of the Cuban administration? What is his opinion of the rebellion?

B) What can the incident tell us about Mencken's general opinions about ideal government, and how to rule properly?

(see the answer keys)

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