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 in this section, what activity was not encouraged or expressly forbidden in the British Consular Service?

2. Citing Karl Marx in this section, Bennett states that there is no way for a country to transition seamlessly from autocracy to what?

3. For what occasion is Carr dressing in this section?

4. Which of the following facts does Carr announce is not open to correction at the end of his monologue?

5. According to Gwen in this section, what does Tzara do in addiction to writing poetry?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Lenin's ill-fated plan to leave Switzerland?

2. What final words of wisdom does Carr offer at the end of the play?

3. What apologia does Henry Carr make regarding his memory?

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

5. Why does Carr bring up Bennett's logbook in this section?

6. Why does Tzara distrust beauty and reason?

7. Describe Lenin's aversion to career artists.

8. What events have transpired in Russia since the abdication of the czar?

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

10. Why does Cecily believe the British are unusually bumbling in their spying on Lenin?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

In Travesties, the personal lives of the characters are constantly being affected by the realities of external political situation. Write an essay about the role of the larger political scene on the events of the play, in three parts:

Part 1) Henry Carr is stationed at the British Consulate in Zurich. How does he arrive there? How does his experience with the war color his attitude toward Zurich? How do his objectives change do to telegrams form London?

Part 2) Tristam Tzara constantly seems at war with convention. How is his work a direct reaction against outside political forces? What are his opinions regarding the war and Russian Bolshevism?

Part 3) Lenin and Nadya's lives are always affected by the events of Russia. What central event in Russia changes their lives in Switzerland, and how do they react to it? To what extent is Lenin never really living in Zurich?

Essay Topic 2

The central story of Travesties is a love story involving two couples, but it is driven in large part by the British desire to keep tabs on Lenin. Write an essay about Carr's mission to prevent Lenin's passage into Russia. How does he initially react to the assignment as related and elucidated by Bennett? Why does it bring him into contact with Cecily? In the end, why does Carr have such difficulty following through with his assignment?

Essay Topic 3

The women of Travesties serve an interesting purpose in the play. They almost serve as counter-balances to the men that court them, elucidating the underpinnings of their beliefs and the truth of their assertions. Write an essay about the women in the play in three parts:

Part 1) Examine the courtship between Gwen and Tzara. How does she challenge him to defend his Dada poetry in a way no one else does? How does he prove the worth of his art in this sequence?

Part 2) Nadya narrates much of the second act of the play. What new information regarding Lenin's attitude toward art does she provide? How does this create a more vibrant portrait of the revolutionary politician?

Part 3) Throughout the play, Henry Carr's assertions seem more than a little suspect. What new information does Old Cecily provide at the end of the play? Does she seem a more reliable narrator than Carr?

(see the answer keys)

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