The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Poetry Test | Final Test - Hard

J. D. Mcclatchy
This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 119 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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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. In Sharon Olds' "The Glass," she writes about her father who is dying from a tumor in which part of his body?

2. William Matthews is not connected to which of the following colleges/universities?

3. Jay Wright honored famed black scientist _______ in his work.

4. What was the occupation of Kay Ryan's father?

5. Heather McHugh studied under which famous poet?

Short Essay Questions

1. Examine the theme of acceptance and the passing of time as it appears in Jorie Graham's work.

2. Examine Kay Ryan's opinion on inevitable change. What point is Ryan attempting to make?

3. Discuss Amy Clampitt's early career. What are some of Clampitt's themes?

4. How is Sharon Olds categorized as a poet? What words are best used to describe Olds' work? What are some of Olds' most common themes?

5. What is Mary Oliver's style? How does Mary Oliver incorporate nature into her work? What unique gift does Oliver have as a poet?

6. Examine the theme and meaning contained in Rita Dove's "Adolescence - II." How does the theme link to Dove's other work?

7. Who is Robert Pinsky's main influence? What is Robert Pinsky's goal regarding his poetry? What topic most interests Pinsky? How does Pinsky get his point across?

8. Examine Yusef Komunyakaa's background and influences regarding his work.

9. What unique gift is expressed in Philip Levine's work? What prompted this style and choice of theme? What are some of Levine's poems included in his section?

10. In which regions and countries did Irving Feldman live? What are some of the characteristics of Feldman's work? Name three people that appear in Feldman's poetry.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In several of the works, the poets manage to create characters and evoke emotions through the use of monologue and/or dialogue. As such the poet requires the reader to experience a situation through the eyes of another, effectively creating or using another voice rather than one's own. Explain how this might be done. If you were going to create a poem written in this way, what voice would you choose to use? How would you achieve the transformation? Would it be easier or more difficult to choose a fictional character? Would it be easier or more difficult to write through the eyes of the opposite sex?

Essay Topic 2

Discuss juxtaposition and how it might help or hinder a poet's work. How does one choose the appropriate items or subjects to juxtapose? Write two poems - one with effective juxtaposition and one where the juxtaposition fails to make the poem interesting, distinct, or understood. Also examine at least one of the poems included by Allen Ginsberg and Charles Simic to better understand the use of juxtaposition.

Essay Topic 3

Jay Wright, Michael S. Harper and Allen Ginsberg are just three of the poets that used their work to support a particular culture. Wright and Harper wrote poems dedicated to black culture, while Ginsberg was focused on being part of the counterculture of America during the 1950s and beyond. Write a 750 word essay on how using poetry to reveal and/or celebrate cultural differences may be an effective way to teach the general public about that specific culture. Also discuss how using poetry in this way might have a negative effect.

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