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. In which category does Zorba think his boss strives for with his food?
(a) Love and kindness.
(b) Fat and manure.
(c) Work.
(d) God.

2. Why does Zorba say he removed the body part?
(a) It got in the way of his pottery.
(b) It hurt constantly.
(c) It was too big.
(d) It was strangely colored.

3. Who takes charge when the work begins in the mine?
(a) Zorba.
(b) The narrator's grandfather.
(c) The narrator.
(d) A soldier.

4. What exclamation does the first chapter conclude with?
(a) "God and the Devil!"
(b) "Monks and Demons!"
(c) "Heaven and Hell!"
(d) "Jesus and Satan!"

5. What does the narrator decide about the poetry he has always loved?
(a) It should be banned and removed from all libraries.
(b) It is worthless and does not relate to the true human experience.
(c) It helped him get through his youth but is of little value now.
(d) It is a foundational part of his sophisticated world view.

Short Answer Questions

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

2. In Chapter 11, what does the narrator do when he sees the widow?

3. What part of the narrator's friendship with his absent friend is he sad about?

4. Why does Zorba begin to feel restless and depressed while in Candia?

5. As the narrator gets to know the mine workers, what does he talk to them about?

Short Essay Questions

1. What feelings does Zorba express about religion?

2. When the narrator makes an attempt to get to know some of the mine workers, he begins to discuss socialism with them. Zorba does not like this. What are his reasons?

3. Discuss the two goals that the narrator sets for himself at the end of Chapter 4? How is this a shift from the beginning of the story?

4. Why is the narrator going to Crete?

5. How does the fact that Zorba is missing half of his finger relate to his connection between manliness and freedom?

6. What does Zorba represent in the story?

7. Explain the parrot's role in the life of Madame Hortense and her guests.

8. Describe the painting that Zorba presents to Madame Hortense.

9. Describe the narrator's counter argument to Zorba's connection between manliness and freedom regarding his missing finger?

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

Multiple Choice Answer Key

1. D
2. A
3. A
4. A
5. B

Short Answer Key

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

Communication.

2. In Chapter 11, what does the narrator do when he sees the widow?

Nothing. He is unable to approach her.

3. What part of the narrator's friendship with his absent friend is he sad about?

The two argued rather than expressing love.

4. Why does Zorba begin to feel restless and depressed while in Candia?

He realizes he's aging.

5. As the narrator gets to know the mine workers, what does he talk to them about?

Socialist ideas.

Short Essay Answer Key

1. 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.

2. When the narrator makes an attempt to get to know some of the mine workers, he begins to discuss socialism with them. Zorba does not like this. What are his reasons?

Zorba believes that supervising a workforce requires complete authority. He thinks it's better if they believe they have fewer rights and that workers who feel like they are equal to their bosses will eventually take rights away from their bosses.

3. Discuss the two goals that the narrator sets for himself at the end of Chapter 4? How is this a shift from the beginning of the story?

The narrator wants to rid himself of Buddha and the abstract thinking that comes along with Buddha. He also wants to be completely present in the physical world of men. He has wanted to find this physicality since the beginning of the story when his old friend's words inspire him to seek such a life, and begin his journey to Crete. Originally, he was completely invested in philosophizing as well. However, the fact that he wants to exorcise Buddha from his thinking is a definite shift in his character.

4. 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.

5. How does the fact that Zorba is missing half of his finger relate to his connection between manliness and freedom?

Zorba says that he cut part of his finger off because it got in the way of making pottery. He argues that anything that gets in the way of man doing what he wants should be removed. Because it takes a great deal of physical and mental courage to remove a body part, the connection for Zorba is strong.

6. 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.

7. Explain the parrot's role in the life of Madame Hortense and her guests.

Hortense's parrot is a constant reminder of Madame Hortense's greatest love. As a possession, it has been trained to say Canavaro's name repeatedly and therefore to challenge the immediacy of Zorba's manliness.

8. Describe the painting that Zorba presents to Madame Hortense.

The painting has four huge battleships on it in red, gold, gray, and black, each with a flag from one of four countries: England, France, Italy, and Russia. Leading the battleship as a siren was Madame Hortense, naked with a yellow ribbon around her neck and holding four strings attached to the ships.

9. Describe the narrator's counter argument to Zorba's connection between manliness and freedom regarding his missing finger?

The narrator argues that although such passions are admirable, they could also possibly lead to the desire to remove more crucial body parts. He suggests that Zorba might eventually want to remove his sexual organs, which would have a much more life-altering and drastic result.

10. 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.

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