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. What was the subject of the Scopes monkey trial?

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

3. In "The Hills of Zion," why did a woman warn against the reading of books?

4. How did Mencken describe the music of Chopin?

5. Who were the two attorneys in the Scopes monkey trial?

Short Essay Questions

1. What was Mencken's opinion of stage acting?

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

3. What type of people attended the Progressive Party convention of 1948?

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

5. For what reasons did Mencken admire Grover Cleveland?

6. According to "The Author at Work," why do writers write?

7. What was Mencken's opinion of chiropractic?

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

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

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

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?

Essay Topic 2

Quackery was a favorite subject of Mencken's. What is quackery? Why does Mencken mock it? How does quackery relate to ignorance? In Mencken's view, do those who fall victim to quackery "deserve" their fate?

Essay Topic 3

Mencken often commented on political figures, such as in "Pater Patriae" and "Lodge."

A) Discuss two articles in which Mencken seems to have a positive opinion of the political figure. What does Mencken's admiration tell us about Mencken?

B) Discuss two articles in which Mencken displays a negative opinion of the political figure. Similar to A), what does Mencken's criticisms tell us about Mencken?

(see the answer keys)

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