|Name: _________________________||Period: ___________________|
This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.
Short Answer Questions
1. How many adults lived in the Persian house while Lessing was growing up?
2. Who stated that children should play in mud?
3. At what age did Emily McVeagh die?
4. After returning to England, where did Lessing's family settle?
5. Where did Lessing's father work after he was discharged from the Army?
Short Essay Questions
1. In Chapter 8, how did the girls at the school avoid exams?
2. Describe the English views of themselves and their relation to other people as Lessing portrays it in this chapter.
3. While their mother was bedridden, what did Lessing and her brother do?
4. Describe the circumstances that led to Alfred's depression.
5. In Chapter 7, what did Lessing and her brother do in the bush?
6. After tracing the history of her parents' lives, what does Lessing ponder?
7. In Chapter 6, what was Lessing's mother's primary concern about the children?
8. Why did Lessing's parents have all their teeth removed before leaving for Africa?
9. What advantage does Lessing that claim she has in writing her autobiography late in her life?
10. Describe Lessing's father's medical condition in this chapter.
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
At the same time that Lessing wrote her autobiography, she critically engaged with the strengths and limitations of the form by recounting a valuable form of truth. Explore Lessing's commentary on the autobiography as a genre. What did she believe to be the value in writing her autobiography? What did Lessing perceive to be its limitation? How did exploring Lessing's perspective on the genre that she was using, illuminate the value of the text that resulted from that questioning? What did she ultimately offer her readers with regard to objectivity, subjectivity, or truth? How much more did you know about Lessing herself at the end of her work?
Essay Topic 2
World Wars I and II played a significant role in Lessing's autobiography. Analyze the way in which she grappled with the Wars as historical events; and the repercussions that Europe and the rest of the world faced as a result of those conflicts. How did Lessing portray those effects in the autobiography? How did the Wars differ from other conflicts before them? What was Lessing's opinion regarding those Wars in particular; and the practice of war in general? What reasons did she give for her views on war?
Essay Topic 3
In a memoir that spans three continents over the course of the author's life, space and place become particularly significant to the story and to Lessing's overall commentary. Examine the way in which she treats various spaces and places in the text. What themes, messages, or ideas does Lessing develop through her treatment of spaces and places? How does she portray those spaces and places? Be sure to consider limited spaces such as the various houses that Lessing recalls, and places as broad as the countries she lived in, to the various cities or communities where she resided.
This section contains 903 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)