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

2. In mistakenly recalling Lenin's appearance, what regional appearance does Carr say he bears?

3. What is Carr's first name?

4. Due to a clerical error on his birth certificate, what if James Joyce's legal middle name?

5. What article of clothing does Bannett mention specifically when describing Tzara to Carr?

Short Essay Questions

1. How is Lenin surprised by the Russian Revolution?

2. Describe Joyce's falling out with Carr.

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

4. What lie does Carr argue is the artist's great achievement?

5. What parts of Henry Carr's story can be definitively believed by the audience?

6. What is Joyce's business at the house at the end of the play?

7. How does Henry Carr change at the end of his monologue?

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

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

10. In what way has Carr's manner of study impeded his learning?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Travesties, the setting of Zurich is a central component of the story, creating a unique combination of peace and fervor. Write an essay about the role of Zurich in the play in three parts:

Part 1) At the beginning of the play Henry Carr speaks glowingly of life in Switzerland during the war. What does he love in particular about it? How is it a succor for someone who has been in the trenches?

Part 2) Joyce and Tzara both comment that Zurich has become the artistic center of Europe. What has brought so many creative souls to the city? What new and old art is being created?

Part 3) Zurich is also the home of political exiles. Describe the exiled leftist Russian government that holds regular gatherings in Switzerland. How do they plan the revolution from their exiled post?

Essay Topic 2

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 3

Stoppard's plays often involve large personalities with different world-views clashing regarding some major topic. In Travesties, the topic is revolution and art. Write an essay on three characters and how they represent different views of these subjects:

Part 1) Henry Carr represents the past, a Victorian ideal. How does he relate to the other characters int he play? How does his obsession with clothing and order represent a style that is going out of fashion?

Part 2) James Joyce is perhaps the most of-the-moment in 1917. To what extend has he reconciled his love for the classical with the acknowledgment that the world is shifting? How is Ulysses a physical representation of this?

Part 3) Tristan Tzara wants to throw away everything that has come before, reject the old forms. How is he the most abrasive of characters on the stage? In what ways are all other characters put off by him?

(see the answer keys)

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