Zorba the Greek 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. Why does Zorba suggest that the narrator should burn his library?
(a) Because his books don't celebrate nature enough.
(b) Because the books are unrelated to mining.
(c) Because the books are religious.
(d) Because the books are romantic.

2. What does the narrator do on his first morning in Crete?
(a) He discusses his plans for the mine with Zorba.
(b) He goes to the market.
(c) He reads the Bible.
(d) He takes a stroll through the countryside.

3. In Chapter 4, what does the narrator do when he first awakens?
(a) Smokes a pipe.
(b) Goes jogging.
(c) Has coffee with Zorba.
(d) Goes straight to work.

4. In Chapter 13, Zorba demonstrates his dedication to what?
(a) His "honest" wife.
(b) The narrator.
(c) Madame Hortense.
(d) His immediate passions.

5. At the feast at Noussa's house, what does Zorba say happened after he gave the toast?
(a) A candle lighting ceremony.
(b) An orgy.
(c) A concert.
(d) An extravagant meal.

Short Answer Questions

1. Who do Zorba and the narrator stay with on their first night on the island?

2. What is one of the narrator's goals at the end of Chapter 4?

3. What does Zorba consider the act of dancing to be?

4. What happens at the mine in Chapter 9?

5. What does Zorba's gift prompt Madame Hortense to do?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the narrator reveal that he is like his grandfather?

2. How might Madame Hortense's romantic history challenge Zorba's concept of his own manliness?

3. What does Zorba represent in the story?

4. What feelings does Zorba express about religion?

5. When Zorba encourages the narrator to be more like he is and pursue the widow, how does this contradict Zorba's other advice?

6. Describe the narrator's memory of his old friend while on their visit to the museum.

7. Why is the narrator going to Crete?

8. What is Zorba's account of God's creation of woman?

9. What does Karayannis's letter from Africa remind the narrator that he has always wanted to do?

10. How does Zorba's version of the devil living inside him compare to Zorba himself?

Multiple Choice Answer Key

1. A
2. D
3. A
4. D
5. B

Short Answer Key

1. Who do Zorba and the narrator stay with on their first night on the island?

Dame Hortense.

2. What is one of the narrator's goals at the end of Chapter 4?

He wants to forget about Buddha.

3. What does Zorba consider the act of dancing to be?

Communication.

4. What happens at the mine in Chapter 9?

It collapses.

5. What does Zorba's gift prompt Madame Hortense to do?

Talk about her love affairs.

Short Essay Answer Key

1. How does the narrator reveal that he is like his grandfather?

He remembers his grandfather demanding that guests tell him their personal stories of adventure so that he could experience the thrill through their stories. This is similar to the narrator in that the adventures for both occur removed from the action and inside the head and ideas of the two.

2. How might Madame Hortense's romantic history challenge Zorba's concept of his own manliness?

Zorba believes in living for the day and that any impediment to freedom and manliness should be removed. Because he thinks sexual relationships are the ultimate in the physical life, he is helpless against the force of her own history. She has been romanced by legendary and powerful men, and Zorba cannot do anything to remove them as competitive forces from his own life. He offers to take on Canavaro's role in her life, but he has no power or awareness of how to actually fulfill that role.

3. What does Zorba represent in the story?

Zorba represents a man who lives for the physical world and ultimately for the individual self in that world. He is an agent of instinct and lacks theoretical reason for his actions. For the narrator, Zorba is a potential symbol of freedom in the narrator's quest to find freedom.

4. What feelings does Zorba express about religion?

Zorba claims to be an atheist. However, when it comes to the other villagers, Zorba believes that religion is not only important but is the center of their way of life. He warns the narrator that speaking against religion to the villagers is not wise as it is better for them than having no organized structure at all.

5. When Zorba encourages the narrator to be more like he is and pursue the widow, how does this contradict Zorba's other advice?

Previously, Zorba told a parable about a crow who tries to walk like a pigeon, reinforcing his idea that one must remain true to his true and individual identity. Zorba's disappointment with the narrator when he is unable to be the man of sensuality that Zorba is, contradicts this parable to some extent.

6. Describe the narrator's memory of his old friend while on their visit to the museum.

The narrator's old friend told him of his love for a painting by Rembrandt; a painting he says he will owe his greatest accomplishments to. As they are leaving the museum, they see a bird land on a statue of an Amazon and begin singing. The narrator asks what it might mean, and the friend recites a few lines that encourage the narrator not to bother himself with such thoughts.

7. Why is the narrator going to Crete?

The narrator is curious about the adventurous life his friend preached to him. He is going to Crete to experiment with such a life by renting a lignite mine and thus engaging more with the physical world. His overall goal in these actions is to find freedom through a marriage of the mind and body.

8. What is Zorba's account of God's creation of woman?

Zorba says that when God removed the rib from Adam, the devil turned into a snake and snatched the rib and ran off with it. God then chased the devil and caught him, but the devil ultimately got away while God was left holding only his horns. God then made woman out of the devil's horns rather than the rib of Adam.

9. What does Karayannis's letter from Africa remind the narrator that he has always wanted to do?

He has a desire to see and touch as much of the world as he possibly can before he dies.

10. How does Zorba's version of the devil living inside him compare to Zorba himself?

Zorba says that the devil is a mirror image of himself. The only difference is that the devil refuses to grow old. He also wears a red carnation behind his ear.

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