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. What or who does the narrator live for?
(a) Women.
(b) Mankind.
(c) Zorba.
(d) God.

2. What does Zorba do when he hears his boss talking to the workmen?
(a) He throws his boss out of the mine.
(b) He asks his boss to get them lunch.
(c) He asks his boss to record the men's work hours.
(d) He tells his boss that they are lazy.

3. What are Zorba's beliefs about the existence of God?
(a) He does not personally believe in God but believes religion is essential to civilization.
(b) He looks to Anagnosti for all of his religious questions and shares his beliefs.
(c) He is a Christian.
(d) He believes in a higher power but not in religion.

4. What happens at the mine in Chapter 9?
(a) They find record amounts of lignite.
(b) Five men suffocate to death.
(c) It collapses.
(d) A baby is abandoned there.

5. What does the narrator mostly do while Zorba works in the mine?
(a) He swims in the ocean.
(b) He works on his writing.
(c) He also works in the mine.
(d) He romances Madame Hortense.

Short Answer Questions

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

2. Who is the second person to offer the narrator and Zorba lodging in Crete?

3. With whom does Zorba begin a romance?

4. How does the narrator end the letter to his friend in Chapter 8?

5. Who does the narrator receive letters from in Chapter 12?

Short Essay Questions

1. What significance does the fact that Madame Hortense is a widow have toward the theme of manliness?

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

3. What feelings does Zorba express about religion?

4. In Chapter 3, how are the relationships between men and women on Crete exhibited?

5. What does Zorba represent in the story?

6. How does the narrator's memory of the butterfly impact his feelings about approaching the widow?

7. How does the narrator describe Zorba the first time he sees him dancing?

8. What kinds of responsibilities does Zorba take on at the initiation of his friendship with the narrator.

9. How does the narrator try to get the widow out of his mind at the beginning of Chapter 10?

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

Multiple Choice Answer Key

1. D
2. A
3. A
4. C
5. B

Short Answer Key

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

Talk about her love affairs.

2. Who is the second person to offer the narrator and Zorba lodging in Crete?

The village elder.

3. With whom does Zorba begin a romance?

Dame Hortense.

4. How does the narrator end the letter to his friend in Chapter 8?

He tells him that he has love for him.

5. Who does the narrator receive letters from in Chapter 12?

His old friend and Karayannis.

Short Essay Answer Key

1. What significance does the fact that Madame Hortense is a widow have toward the theme of manliness?

Madame Hortense is a character on whom Zorba and the narrator choose instantly to rely upon for shelter. The fact that she is completely devoid of Zorba's "manliness" (as a widowed woman) and has outlived her four great lovers, admirals who could be classified as the most manly of all men, speaks to a contrasting energy of freedom neither articulated by the narrator nor by Zorba.

2. 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.

3. 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.

4. In Chapter 3, how are the relationships between men and women on Crete exhibited?

In the beginning of the chapter, the narrator's encounter with the young women in the country exhibits the historical impact of war and violence on the male/female relationship. They are immediately frightened of him as a stranger, and so their encounter is stunted. Mavrandoni's offer to let the men stay in his house to avoid the scandal of staying with a woman also exhibits a level of division and acceptable interaction between men and women.

5. 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.

6. How does the narrator's memory of the butterfly impact his feelings about approaching the widow?

The narrator had attempted to help the butterfly emerge from the cocoon by blowing warm air on it. Doing this made the butterfly emerge too quickly and die. The narrator realizes while meditating on this memory, that an individual must "confidently obey the eternal rhythm." He knows, in turn, that he can't speed his relationship with the widow and must let it unfold naturally.

7. How does the narrator describe Zorba the first time he sees him dancing?

The narrator says Zorba looks like he is wearing rubber shoes. He also says that Zorba's soul looks like it is trying to fling his body like a meteor into the darkness.

8. What kinds of responsibilities does Zorba take on at the initiation of his friendship with the narrator.

Zorba agrees to act as foreman of the lignite mine. He also promises to cook the narrator soup and play him music on his santuri.

9. How does the narrator try to get the widow out of his mind at the beginning of Chapter 10?

The narrator views the widow as a temptation of the Evil One and focuses on writing his Buddha Manuscript in order to exorcise her image and the lust he feels for her from his mind. To him, his writing is comparable to the force of savages facing beasts with their spears.

10. 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.

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