White Noise 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 she teach there?

2. Which of the children confronts Babette directly about the medication?

3. In what month does the book begin?

4. Where does the German teacher live?

5. What kind of car plays a big role in the first chapters of the book, as parents drop off the college students?

Short Essay Questions

1. What kind of exercise does Babette do? Does Jack join in?

2. Why do they bring Wilder to the doctor in Chapter 16?

3. Describe the scene that opens the novel, in terms of setting, action and narration.

4. What is Babette's attitude toward parents watching television with their children?

5. Why does Babette ask if Bee and Steffie know each other?

6. Why does Jack think the Treadwells did not ask for help when they were lost?

7. According to Jack, why does Bee make the family feel self-conscious?

8. Babette's class at the Church is made of what kind of people learning what activities?

9. Describe how Murray interacts with Jack and Babette at the supermarket.

10. Characterize Heinrich in terms of the discussion about the rain he has with Jack. What does DeLillo want us to understand about him?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Foreshadowing is an important technique. Write an essay that explains how DeLillo foreshadows the Airborne Toxic Event with a series of prior events. Describe the events and be specific about his foreshadowing technique.

Essay Topic 2

Babette teaches frivolous and ridiculous classes; Jack teaches Hitler studies rather than German History or Politics, and his colleague Murray wants to create an Elvis studies department. Write an analytical essay in which you explore and discuss what you think DeLillo is communicating about education, teaching, higher education, or learning. Be sure to consider Jack's attempts at irony.

Essay Topic 3

Compare and contrast the Airborne Toxic Event with a real crisis--Wilder's tricycle trip through traffic at the end of the book. How does DeLillo present each story event and characterize the family's reaction? What are the structural differences (as in, when each event happens in the chronology of the novel) and what do you think DeLillo wants the reader to think at these two times? What are the effects of these two crisis situations on the family members and what do they reveal about who these people are? What is DeLillo's larger point in contrasting such a small, personalized event with one that involved the whole town?

(see the answer keys)

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