The Vintage Mencken Test | Final Test - Hard

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

Short Answer Questions

1. Which of the following did NOT happen during "The Hills of Zion"?

2. Which of the following was NOT a name applied to William Jennings Bryan by Mencken?

3. Which is the best style of architecture, according to Mencken?

4. Which of the following was NOT an attribute of an artist, as Mencken describes in "The Artist"?

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

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Mencken discussed perfection in "The Good Man," and states that every good quality in a man is balanced by a flaw.

A) Does Mencken feel that perfection is possible? How can "The Good Man" be reconciled with something like "A Glance Ahead," in which Mencken imagines an ideal government?

B) Is there a danger in attempting perfection?

C) What might Mencken say about perfection and its relation to organized religion?

Essay Topic 2

Mencken mused about death in "Exeunt Omnes."

A) What was the aspect of death which interested Mencken the most?

B) How might "Exeunt Omnes" help us understand Mencken's anti-war stance? How does Mencken's attitude toward death relate to his anti-war stance?

C) Per Mencken's own apparent attitude, what might Mencken tell his readers is the best attitude to have toward death and mortality?

Essay Topic 3

Beauty and ugliness were topics of the articles "The Lure of Beauty" and "The Libido of the Ugly."

A) How does Mencken define beauty? How is beauty related to art criticism?

B) Is beauty objective or subjective? Cite examples in the text of how Mencken might answer this question.

C) How is beauty related to physical attraction?

(see the answer keys)

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