Visions of Excess: Selected Writings, 1927-1939 Test | Final 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 was Nietzsche's life dominated by, in Bataille's account?

2. When does an obelisk cease to be meaningful?

3. What was Nietzsche's relationship with fascism, in Bataille's account?

4. What does the homogeneous part of society purchase?

5. What does Bataille say about a man who knows his neighbors?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Bataille see as the value of Christianity of in "The Notion of Expenditure"?

2. How does Andre Masson create the tone of the drawings in the book for which Bataille wrote a preface?

3. What pattern for self-discovery does Bataille offer in "The Sacred"?

4. What does contemporary society offer men in "The Sacred Conspiracy", and what does man demand for himself?

5. When does Bataille date the origin of the Popular Front to?

6. What flaw does Bataille identify in dialectic philosophy in "The Critique of the Foundations of the Hegelian Dialectic"?

7. How does the artist give meaning in "The Sorcerer's Apprentice"?

8. What aspect of Nietzsche's philosophy did the Fascists appropriate, in Bataille's account in "Nietzsche and the Fascists"?

9. What is the essence of Bataille's essay "The Practice of Joy before Death"?

10. What is Bataille's interpretation of Veblen's theory of conspicuous consumption?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Bataille is often revolutionary in his claims and expressions. What would a Bataille revolution look like? Would there be leaders, or would it be anarchy? Based on the text, speculate on the outcome of a revolution based on Bataille's work.

Essay Topic 2

How did the Popular Front fulfill Bataille's ideal of heterogeneity? Analyze his description of the organization in relation with his other essays about revolution and order.

Essay Topic 3

How has the importance of obscenity in literature changed since Bataille's time? Research the reactions to Bataille and to other writers who used disorienting or profane language during Bataille's time, and describe the changes that have taken place in readers' response to obscene or profane or sacrilegious material.

(see the answer keys)

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