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. Who is the second house guest to arrive at the greenhouse?

2. What does Claire push off the table?

3. From where does the beam of light originate?

4. When Claire becomes frustrated with Elizabeth, what does Claire want to do?

5. What does Claire want Elizabeth to do regarding the plants?

Short Essay Questions

1. Adelaide says that she goes about in the world, free, busy, and happy, because among people she has no time to think of herself. Why is this statement distasteful to Claire?

2. Following Tom's rejection of her advances in the tower room, what does Claire do?

3. What does Harry realize when he sees that Claire has strangled Tom?

4. What is the profession of Claire's lover, Dick? How is his profession indicative of his character?

5. What does Harry confide to Tom and Dick, and what response does he receive?

6. The unusual, large, untamed, twisted plants in the greenhouse symbolize what movement in the early twentieth century?

7. After some order has been restored in the greenhouse, Anthony remind everyone it is time to do what?

8. How does Harry react to Claire's actions, yelling to Tom for rescue?

9. What character is onstage alone at the beginning of Act 2, and which two characters join the first character?

10. Describe the attitudes of Claire and Elizabeth when they first meet face to face in Act 1.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

During the play and in her past, Claire has broken several of the Ten Commandments. And yet, at one point she asks Tom to say something pleasant about God, and at the end of the play she sings hymns. What do these contradictory behaviors reveal about Claire and about the playwright's attitude toward Claire's struggle?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss how the professions of the main male characters reflect or amplify their general personalities. Is it significant that Claire's liaisons outside of marriage are with artistic types?

Essay Topic 3

Research and discuss the historical context of this play. What rights were denied to women at the time, and what rights or choices did some women of the time seek to gain?

(see the answer keys)

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