Under My Skin 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. To which of the following does Lessing compare writers?

2. In Chapter 3, which of the following does Lessing describe as her first memory?

3. Where did Lessing's father work after he was discharged from the Army?

4. How many bouts of illness did Lessing's family experience?

5. Which of the following does Lessing state as signifying the end of any war?

Short Essay Questions

1. How did Lessing become an atheist?

2. How does Lessing describe her childhood vulnerability?

3. After tracing the history of her parents' lives, what does Lessing ponder?

4. Describe the English views of themselves and their relation to other people as Lessing portrays it in this chapter.

5. What did Lessing do one night when she was forced to remain in the cabin while her parents attended a dance?

6. From the details Lessing provides in Chapter 1, describe the circumstances which led to Maude's broken heart.

7. What did Lessing suspect was the root of her mother's illness?

8. How did Lessing's parents plan to acquire land in Southern Rhodesia?

9. What essential skill did Lessing learn in Chapter 5?

10. According to Lessing in Chapter 2, what is the role of truth in autobiographical writing?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss Lessing's views on the role and consequences of violence. How did she define violence? What was her stance regarding violence on the personal or national level? Did her opinion remain consistent in all instances? Or did it vary by circumstance? According to Lessing, were there instances of justified violence or war?

Essay Topic 2

Analyze the role of education in Lessing's writings. How was Lessing educated? How did her education affect her views on class, politics, and gender? What was Lessing's opinion of education as an institution? How did she support her opinion of education throughout her autobiography?

Essay Topic 3

Born during the final days of the British Empire, Doris Lessing presents a unique take on the Empire and imperial policy. Discuss Lessing's developing views on the Empire. Explore themes such as the ethics of the Empire, the financial ramifications of the Empire, and the social changes that she discusses after the fall of the Empire. What does her overall message regarding British imperialism appear to be? Support your answers with evidence from the autobiography.

(see the answer keys)

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