Visions of Excess: Selected Writings, 1927-1939 Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. How does Bataille describe the Mithraic cult ritual of the sun in "Rotten Sun"?
(a) A worshiper puts out a priest's eye.
(b) A priest stares into the sun to have a vision.
(c) A priest spatters a bull's blood on worshipers underneath.
(d) A priest cuts a victim's throat on an altar.

2. Whom does Bataille refer to as untouchables in "Psychological Structure of Fascism"?
(a) The workers.
(b) The sovereign.
(c) The rich.
(d) The impoverished.

3. What did Breton call Bataille?
(a) A dubious genius.
(b) An excremental philosopher.
(c) A incremental writing whore.
(d) A prophet.

4. How does dialectic operate in "Notion of Expenditure"?
(a) It results from revolution.
(b) It prevents revolution.
(c) It animates class struggle.
(d) It pacifies the proletariat.

5. Who introduced Bataille to surrealism?
(a) Marcel Duchamp.
(b) Michael Leiris.
(c) Andre Breton.
(d) Joan Miro.

Short Answer Questions

1. What claim does Bataille discuss in "The Deviations of Nature"?

2. How does surrealism rebel at first, in "The 'Old Mole' and the Prefix Sur in the Words Surhomme [Superman] and Surrealist"?

3. What strategy does Surrealism use for presenting images?

4. What form does Bataille take after being a boy in "[Dream]"?

5. What relationship do the writings in Section II have to the writings in Section I?

Short Essay Questions

1. What type of essay is "Formless"?

2. What is expressed in the language of flowers in "The Language of Flowers"?

3. How does the mouth in "Mouth" compare with the eyeball in ''The Eye'?

4. How does self-mutilation in "Sacrificial Mutilation and the Severed Ear of Vincent Van Gogh" relate to Bataille's description of body parts in other essays.

5. What claim did Bataille make in "The Lugubrious Game"?

6. Describe the importance of the 'cephalus' in Bataille's thinking.

7. What is Bataille's relationship with Hegel?

8. Describe the paradox at the heart of "Materialism".

9. What distinguished the big toe in "The Big Toe"?

10. What was Bataille's objection to Nietzsche?

(see the answer keys)

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