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. How did Lessing's friend make a living in New York to support herself and her daughter?

2. Which of the following names does Lessing give the personality that would comes out of her while under the influence of drugs?

3. How did the author feel about her childhood?

4. How many acres of land did James Tayler own in 1851?

5. How did Lessing's mother convey her distaste for Emily McVeagh?

Short Essay Questions

1. What sensation predominated Lessing's childhood?

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

3. Why did Lessing's parents have all their teeth removed before leaving for Africa?

4. In your opinion, why does Lessing trace her lineage in the opening chapter?

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

6. In Chapter 6, what was Lessing's mother's primary concern about the children?

7. Describe the circumstances that led to Alfred's depression.

8. In Chapter 8, how did the girls at the school avoid exams?

9. Describe Lessing's outlook on the future of the world and human society.

10. In Chapter 7, what did Lessing and her brother do in the bush?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Examine the way in which Lessing presented her relationship with her mother. Did she respect or resent her mother? What strained their relationship? Why did Lessing's mother disapprove of Lessing's choices? Ultimately, how did Lessing reflect on her relationship with her mother?

Essay Topic 2

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.

Essay Topic 3

As a child, Lessing grew up in Persia and Southern Rhodesia - regions that were both part of the British Commonwealth. Examine the way in which Lessing discussed life as an English citizen living in the Commonwealth. What were the conditions of their lives as English citizens? How did the lives of the English differ from the lives of the indigenous peoples? How did Lessing treat those conditions and differences?

(see the answer keys)

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