Up at the Villa 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. What does Karl say he would like to do that night?

2. Why is Edgar visiting?

3. What does Mary do with a hundred lira note?

4. What did Mary know about that Matthew tried to hide?

5. What does Mary make clear to Rowley?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Mary think of the Princess' comments on marriage to Edgar?

2. How does Edgar bring up the subject of marriage to Mary?

3. How long has Mary known Edgar and what was Mary's mother's opinion of the man?

4. What does Mary point out about Rowley's reputation and what is his response?

5. What does Mary think about Edgar's job prospects?

6. How has Mary been spending her time lately and what bearing does that have to do with Mary being at the villa?

7. Why is Mary conflicted about attending the party?

8. What is Mary's response to Rowley's questions about Edgar and how does Rowley respond?

9. What happens to distress Mary about Matthew?

10. What does narration say of the villa in which Mary is staying?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

There are a number of interesting questions raised by this book--questions that Maugham may have wanted the readers to consider and think through carefully. Discuss the following:

1. What does the term "author agenda" mean?

2. Name one idea/concept you think may have been a part of the author's agenda. Analyze that idea throughout the book and discuss Maugham's probable agenda concerning that idea.

2. Do you think writers who have an agenda for writing should point it out in a preface?

3. How often do you think fiction is written with a clear agenda in mind by the author?

Essay Topic 2

Maugham chooses to write the novel as a third person, impersonal narrator. Discuss the following:

1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of this novel being written in the third person, impersonal narration?

2. Do you think the novel would be more effective in a different point of view? Which one if so? If not why do you think the impersonal narrator works the best?

3. Do you think the narrator in Up at the Villa is reliable, i.e., do you believe the narrator is completely unbiased? Explain your response.

Essay Topic 3

Rowley isn't very favorably seen by his peers and Mary says that his biggest disgrace is that he's never had to work. Discuss the following:

1. Do you think it is harmful for someone to be "born into money"? What do you think are the advantages and disadvantages of such a situation?

2. What character traits of Rowley's do you think are directly or indirectly attributable to his never having to work and have all the money he needs/wants? Discuss fully using examples from the text.

3. Assuming you have not been born into the same type of situation as Rowley, do you think you would want to have been born into a very wealthy family that did not require you to earn a living? Why or why not.

4. What do you think Rowley should have been (could be) doing differently with his money that might be more positive--or is it positive enough to just want to enjoy life? Explain fully.

(see the answer keys)

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