Torch Song Trilogy Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What characters are on stage at the opening of this scene?

2. How does David respond to Arnold telling him that Arnold still intends to adopt David?

3. Where is Laurel visiting Arnold?

4. Where do Laurel's parents live?

5. What has Laurel done?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

In "Fugue in a Nursery, Subject," in a conversation between Ed and Laurel, Ed restates his jealousy of Alan and the resentment of Alan's presence in Arnold's life and at the house this weekend. Discuss the following ideas in a well-developed essay using specific examples both from the text and any research you complete:

1. Do you think it is fair for Ed to feel jealous of Arnold having Alan when Ed left Arnold for Laurel? Explain your opinion.

2. There is a saying that "one cannot help how s/he feels." Give your response to this statement, using examples to illustrate your ideas.

3. Do you think Arnold is jealous of Laurel? Why or why not?

4. Even if a person cannot help how s/he feels, the person can control how s/he acts upon those feelings. Do you believe this statement is true? Why or why not? Give specific details to support your statements.

Essay Topic 2

In "The International Stud: Scene 3," Arnold finally contacts Ed, who admits he is dating a woman. It seems likely from the conversation between Arnold and Ed that Ed is very aware of family and societal pressures to be "normal." Choose one of the following topics and write a well-developed essay using specific examples both from the text and any research you complete:

1. In what ways does the culture in which you live define normalcy as heterosexuality? Use examples from movies, t.v., school, church, and other cultural institutions. Discuss the ramifications of bucking cultural pressure and living life as a homosexual.

2. How does one's family of origin help shape one's perceptions of what is normal? What sort of overt, covert, and unconscious pressure is placed on one to conform to one's family's definition of normal? What are some behaviors and beliefs that are considered normal? Give examples both from the play, Torch Song Triology and your own life.

3. Discuss three famous people who have chosen to live apart from what is considered normal: not necessarily as homosexuals, but in any way that society might label as different or not normal. Do you admire these people's choices? Do they violate any moral laws according to how you have been raised. Could you see your self making a similar choice? Include, if you are comfortable in doing so, ways that you have chosen to be or do what is considered not normal.

Essay Topic 3

In "Fugue in a Nursery, Codetta," Ed reads a newspaper to Laurel about a love affair between an 80-year-old woman and a boy of fifteen. Discuss one of the following topics in a well-developed essay using specific examples both from the text and any research you complete:

1. The American culture is often characterized as being preoccupied with youth. Do you think the reality of an actual love affair between a 15 year old and an 80 year old has even happened in a culture such as the United States? What are the legal ramifications of such a romance? Disregarding any sexual aspects of such a relationship, what do you think two people of such disparate ages would have in common? In what areas would there likely be conflicts? Could you imagine being in a relationship with someone several decades older than you are? Explain.

2. A "cultist" movie called Harold and Maud was released in 1971. It was centered around just such a relationship as that mentioned in Torch Song Trilogy between a teen and an elderly woman. Watch the movie and write a literary criticism on it, including a personal "reader (viewer) response."

3. In many cultures today, and most in earlier centuries, marriages were arranged around political and financial goals for those in the higher echelons of a country. Often a child was engaged to an adult and the marriage is consummated when the child is of acceptable age. Discuss the following question using specific examples: Would you prefer to be of the wealthy class and have a life of privilege but have an arranged marriage to someone you detest, or would you prefer to be a peasant who worked in hard physical labor but was able to choose your spouse? Discuss the pros and cons of both situations and then explain why you would choose whichever you choose.

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