A Thousand Clowns Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Herb Gardner
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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. How many days does Murray have before he has to appear before the Board?

2. What type of book(s) does Nick enter the room with?

3. What does Nick say he remembers about his mother?

4. What does Nick collect after putting down his instrument?

5. What is the name of Nick's plastic hula dancer?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe Albert.

2. After Sandra leaves and Murray rushes to the door to open it and Sandra is still on the other side, what changes with their interaction after the door opens?

3. Why does Arnold come to Murray's apartment in Act 3, Part 1?

4. What does Arnold mean when he tells Murray to leave the dragons alone?

5. Describe the last scene before the curtains close on the final act.

6. What does Arnold tell Murray is the one thing that really bothers Murray and that is his problem?

7. When Sandra tells Murray that "this morning" she thought he was going to go get a job, what does Murray start talking about?

8. Describe some of the funny parts of Leo's routine that Nick doesn't think is funny.

9. After Albert and Sandra sit back down with Murray what types of questions do they ask about Nick?

10. Who is Irving R. Feldman and why is his name brought up in the play, <i>A Thousand Clowns</i>?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The theme of the bonds of family is used in a different ways in A Thousand Clowns. Discuss the ways this theme is used and between which people it is most apparent. How does this theme affect each character in the play? Are only blood relatives involved? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 2

Albert and Sandra are Child Welfare agents in the play A Thousand Clowns. Besides working together as partners, Sandra and Albert are also dating at the beginning of the play. Compare and contrast Sandra and Albert's characters in detail. Do they make good working partners? Why or why not? Do they make a good couple? Why or why not?

Essay Topic 3

Herb Gardner does a fine job of developing the character of Murray Burns. Describe in detail the characterization of Murray Burns from the start of the play to the end of the play. Make sure to include details about Murray's physical characteristics, his actions, his reactions, and even perhaps what his thoughts may be. Include specific examples from the play.

(see the answer keys)

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