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

2. Which of the following describes an Anglo-Saxon soldier, according to Mencken?

3. What might Mencken say was Grover Cleveland's defining trait?

4. To what degree has "new architecture" impacted America?

5. What was the subject of Mencken's final published article?

Short Essay Questions

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

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

3. What was Mencken's opinion of chiropractic?

4. What did Mencken feel were the true and most damaging consequences of the Civil War, according to "The Calamity of Appomattox"?

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

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

7. Why are artists "anti-patriotic," according to Mencken in "The Artist"?

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

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

10. What was the content of "Sententiae"?

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

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

In articles like "The Baltimore of the Eighties," Mencken looks back on his childhood. What attitude does Mencken have toward childhood? How did his childhood impact the man he became? Why is it valuable to take this look back?

(see the answer keys)

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