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. How was plutocracy created, according to Mencken?

2. What was the subject of "A Good Man Gone Wrong"?

3. What did Mencken call for in "Mencken's Last Stand"?

4. What was the subject of "The Noble Experiment"?

5. Which of the following might Mencken say about Calvin Coolidge?

Short Essay Questions

1. According to "The Wallace Paranoia," what did candidate Henry Wallace do during the convention of the Progressive Party?

2. What was the content of "Sententiae"?

3. What was Mencken's opinion of chiropractic?

4. What caused Mencken to question the American psyche in "The Libido for the Ugly"?

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

6. How was FDR able to win the Democratic National Convention of 1932?

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

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

9. Contemporaries wrote that Calvin Coolidge bore several similarities to Abraham Lincoln. Why did Mencken disagree with this claim?

10. What were the general features of Anglo-Saxons, according to Mencken in "The Anglo-Saxon"?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Mencken often mentions the idea of an American aristocracy, as in "The National Letters." What could an American aristocracy accomplish, to Mencken's mind? How does Mencken's ideas for the aristocracy relate to his opinions about intellectuals versus common people? What kinds of government systems does he compare the aristocracy to?

Essay Topic 2

What was Mencken's perspective on education? Is there a difference between education done in school, and education derived from "real life" so to speak? How does Mencken view his lack of a college education? What does Mencken see as the problem with modern school-based education?

Essay Topic 3

Abraham Lincoln was the subject of a long essay. Discuss the logic and structure of Mencken's argument in regards to Abraham Lincoln. What premise does Mencken assume? What is his thesis? What evidence does he use to support his thesis, and what logic does he employ?

(see the answer keys)

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