Zorba the Greek Test | Final Test - Hard

This set of Lesson Plans consists of approximately 156 pages of tests, essay questions, lessons, and other teaching materials.
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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 supposedly happens to the Martyred Virgin once every year?

2. How does Zorba change his appearance while in Candia?

3. Who attempts to cheer Zorba up following the death of Hortense?

4. When the narrator loses everything, what does he find?

5. What good omen marks the narrator and Zorba's morning on the day work is to begin on the railway?

Short Essay Questions

1. Describe the monastery bishop's first theory on religion.

2. Describe what happened while Zorba was at war that changed his mind about judging a person based on nationality.

3. What evidence of artistic inspiration does the narrator find in the ruins of the old city? How does he feel when he sees it?

4. Why does Zaharia say he became a monk?

5. What does Zorba say about the act of crying when Madame Hortense dies?

6. What was Zaharia's inspiration for burning down the monastery?

7. What two major shifts happen to the narrator in Chapter 21? What major realization do these shifts spur in the narrator.

8. After the widow's murder, what happens when Zorba and Manolakas meet near the widow's garden?

9. As the narrator watches Zorba comfort Madame Hortense on her death bed with the others eagerly awaiting her death, what does he compare the scene to?

10. What might be the significance of the narrator inheriting the Santuri?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Zorba describes sex as the essence of paradise and not at all an impediment to gaining "freedom." Simultaneously, he describes man as a servant sent to please women sexually.

Part 1) Is Zorba's description of Zeus, a creature beaten to sexual exhaustion in his service to women, mutually exclusive to his claims of manly freedom or are they indeed one and the same?

Part 2) The narrator uses less aggression when approaching women, yet he's able to use some of Zorba's advice to good result. Do you think the teacher or the student better masters Zorba's twofold theory on sexuality?

Essay Topic 2

A constant struggle in the novel exists between what is fated and what is the result of enacted will.

Part 1) How do the narrator and Zorba differ on the topic of fate? Does either one think that fate can be altered?

Part 2) How does his opinion on fate impact the way the narrator handles his relationship with the widow? What is Zorba's opinion on this?

Part 3) Zorba indicates that he believes all men fall into the marriage "trap" eventually. He also speaks of men and women's particular and inborn flaws. Would these opinions be relegations to fate, or would they, by Zorba's law, be things that an active will could prevent?

Essay Topic 3

The santuri instrument is an important symbol throughout the novel. It is one of many modes of expression between the two main characters.

Part 1) What does the santuri symbolize in terms of language?

Part 2) What is the significance of the fact that Zorba brags about his talent on the instrument yet will only play it when he's in the mood?

Part 3) Why do you think the santuri is the object left to the narrator when Zorba dies?

Short Answer Key

1. What supposedly happens to the Martyred Virgin once every year?

It bleeds from a chiseled wound.

2. How does Zorba change his appearance while in Candia?

He dyed his hair black.

3. Who attempts to cheer Zorba up following the death of Hortense?

The festival-goers.

4. When the narrator loses everything, what does he find?

Happiness.

5. What good omen marks the narrator and Zorba's morning on the day work is to begin on the railway?

White flowers blooming outside their window.

Short Essay Answer Key

1. Describe the monastery bishop's first theory on religion.

He believes that the shape of a flower influences its color and its color then has an influence on its properties which in turn produce a specific effect on humans. He summarizes this theory with the belief that men should be careful when walking through fields of flowers because of the peculiar effects the flowers are having on them.

2. Describe what happened while Zorba was at war that changed his mind about judging a person based on nationality.

While at war, Zorba murdered a Bulgarian priest who had been invading Greek villages and killing Greeks. Later, when Zorba sees the orphans of the priest, he realizes that nationality doesn't matter. Rather, "good" and "bad" are the only important classifications to consider.

3. What evidence of artistic inspiration does the narrator find in the ruins of the old city? How does he feel when he sees it?

The narrator finds a partially finished jar carved from stone and a chisel on the ground nearby. This fills him with bitterness as he realizes the artistic inspiration has been defeated.

4. Why does Zaharia say he became a monk?

He says poverty led him to become a monk. He was hungry and knew that if he went into the monastery there would be no way he could starve.

5. What does Zorba say about the act of crying when Madame Hortense dies?

He says that he isn't ashamed to cry in front of men because of the unity they share. He says that crying in front of women is different because it is a man's job to prove his courage when before women.

6. What was Zaharia's inspiration for burning down the monastery?

He says he was acting on a mission assigned to him by Archangel Michael. He acted, however, based on the knowledge he received from Zorba.

7. What two major shifts happen to the narrator in Chapter 21? What major realization do these shifts spur in the narrator.

The narrator finally sleeps with the widow, which Zorba has been encouraging him to do for some time. The narrator also finishes the Buddha Manuscript and with it, has the realization that he has exorcised the Buddha from himself. These two shifts make it clear to the narrator that "the soul is flesh as well," or in other words the actions of his body are just as important and spiritual as the meditating and thinking to which he is accustomed.

8. After the widow's murder, what happens when Zorba and Manolakas meet near the widow's garden?

Manolakas challenges Zorba to a knife fight after having been beaten previously. Zorba tells him he will fight without weapons. Then the narrator intervenes and talks them down from fighting at all. They end up all drinking together.

9. As the narrator watches Zorba comfort Madame Hortense on her death bed with the others eagerly awaiting her death, what does he compare the scene to?

The narrator first compares the scene to a huge exotic bird with a broken wing that has fallen and is dying on the beach, with all of the villagers standing around watching for entertainment. Then he compares Madame Hortense to other animals as well, like an "old angora cat" and "a sick old seal."

10. What might be the significance of the narrator inheriting the Santuri?

The Santuri, Zorba's musical instrument, was one of the symbols in the story of the expression of emotion outside of words. Zorba plays the Santuri in the story when he is happy. The fact that the story ends with the Santuri in the narrator's possession is an indication that he has grown closer to reaching his goal, that of a marriage between the body and spirit, and that he has attained some level of the sought after "freedom."

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