The Verge Test | Mid-Book 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. Where does Tom intend to go?

2. In the second part of Act 1, who enters after Harry exits?

3. What does Claire ask Tom to do?

4. Who worries that the cold weather will have adverse effects on the plants?

5. Which is the best description of Claire and Elizabeth's reunion?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Claire say to Tom at the end of Act 1?

2. Why is Claire frustrated by her inability to explain the importance of her plants?

3. How does Claire respond to Adelaide's criticisms?

4. What does Claire do as a result of her anger and disillusionment with Tom?

5. What is the symbolic meaning of "The Breath of Life" in this play?

6. Claire's internal struggle indicates her desire for what?

7. Why is Claire angry about Tom's declaration?

8. What is the significance of the names of the three men in this play who have been Claire's love interests?

9. For what two specific family-related matters does Adelaide chastise Claire?

10. Regarding Claire's two lovers, what action does she take when she enters the greenhouse?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

How does the playwright use sound to illustrate Claire's need to find meaning in her life at the expense of others? Consider the wind, the buzzer, and the Victrola as examples.

Essay Topic 2

How do Claire's plants illustrate her emotional state and the dissatisfaction of some women during the era of the play?

Essay Topic 3

Discuss the symbolism of heat in this play as it relates to love, comfort, and survival. Why is it significant that Claire diverts the heat from her family home to the greenhouse? Why is it significant that a snowstorm rages outdoors, visible through the greenhouse windows?

(see the answer keys)

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