Travesties 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. According to Carr, what was always apparent in Joyce's personality?

2. What is the profession of the man who has Lenin as a tenant, according to Carr?

3. What "modish novelty" does Carr disapprove of in Bennett (14)?

4. According to Marx's theories, what must the Marxist embrace temporarily in order to eventually have a proletarian state?

5. Upon what does Tzara announce defiantly that he spits?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does Joyce convince Carr to take the role of Algernon?

2. What is the purpose of Gwen and Joyce's visit in the limerick scene?

3. What admonition does Carr make to the audience regarding his memory at the end of the act?

4. How do Cecil and Gwen realize that they are both engaged to Tzara?

5. What is Henry Carr's relationship to James Joyce?

6. How does Gwen react to Tzara's poem?

7. Describe some examples of the aristocratic aloofness Carr displays int his section.

8. What caveat does Cecily have for loving Carr/Tristan?

9. What questions does Carr attempt to answer regarding Dada?

10. What opinion do the Bolsheviks have regarding bourgeois-capitalist democracy in Russia?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay about the character of Bennett. He is far an away the most cultivated and best-informed person in the play, but he is a manservant. Stoppard, in his cast notes, says that he should be "quite a weighty presence" (vii). What is Bennett's function int he script at the beginning of the play? How does Carr's leaving him in charge of the consulate affect Lenin's situation? What new revelations about his character are revealed in the final moments of the play?

Essay Topic 2

Tom Stoppard is a linguist, perhaps the most adventurous linguist of the modern theatre. Language plays a major part in Travesties, though the play is all in English. Write an essay analyzing the major forms the writing takes, focusing on four forms: Witty Farce, Docudrama, Modern Debate, and Limericks. When dos each form occur in the play? What characters or topics are invariably involved with each form? Does one form generally follow another?

Essay Topic 3

Truth and confusion is a central theme of Travesties. The play itself is a story told by an elderly and senile man, and it examines the unlikeliness of ever knowing for certain with the truth of a story is. Write an essay about memory and confusion, focusing on three aspects of the play:

Part 1) This play opens and closes with monologues by Henry Carr, and throughout he interrupts the action to explain it and himself. What apologies and explanations does he make regarding his memory? At what points does he become defiant regarding the truth of his story?

Part 2) Throughout the play, Stoppard has what are called time slips, moments when the action repeats itself and changes slightly. What do these time slips reflect? When do they occur, and how do they change the meaning of much of the action?

Part 3) What, in the end, can the audience believe about Henry Carr's story? What assertions turn out to be completely false? What is Stoppard saying about the human inclination to self-mythologize?

(see the answer keys)

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