Zorba the Greek Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Which character reveals that he had a son who died at the age of three?

2. For what action does Zorba grow proud of the narrator?

3. How does the narrator respond to the bishop's theories on religion?

4. What is the statue of Our Lady of Revenge notorious for?

5. What causes Zorba to become infuriated after Hortense's death?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In the beginning of the story, the narrator is reading a book called The Dialogue of Buddha and the Shepherd, which encourages the virtue of possessing nothing. By the end of the story, he has exorcised the Buddha as an inhabitant of the Void where abstract and unhelpful thinking occurs.

Part 1) How does the appearance of his reading material foreshadow the narrator's experience?

Part 2) Describe the asset that the narrator discovers to be most essential to life. Is this asset truly a possession?

Part 3) Describe Zorba's relationship with possessions. Would he consider his experiences to be his possessions?

Essay Topic 2

Several occurrences dovetail into the final exorcism of the Buddha.

Part 1) The death of Madame Hortense coincides with the narrator's affair with the widow and his completion of the manuscript.

• How might Hortense's death symbolize the death of the Buddha? Was Hortense physically present in life?

• Could her fantasies about past lovers and her role as a siren be categorized as a part of the "Void"?

• What kind of symbolic import does the looting of her belongings have on the theme of the Buddha?

Part 2) Zorba ultimately encourages the narrator to pursue the widow. Describe the outcome of the physical intimacy.

• Do you believe that physical intimacy could free the narrator from his philosophizing?

• Does the narrator adopt Zorba's ideas about physical intimacy? Should he?

Part 3) Do you think the narrator is completely finished with the Buddha when he finishes the manuscript? Provide evidence to support your answer.

Essay Topic 3

Zorba has a complex relationship with the female sex. The narrator regards him as misogynistic, but he, at times, seems to afford women more freedoms than the average villager.

Part 1) Under what category of his "marriages" would Zorba's relationship with Madame Hortense fall under? Why?

• How does Zorba treat her differently than the other villagers do?

• Does his treatment of her fall in line with his claim that women have less moral strength than men?

Part 2) Zorba tells a story of his brother threatening to kill his daughter for becoming pregnant out of wedlock upon which he offers no opinion. He also reveals that to his greatest love he was only "half-honestly" married.

• Do you think Zorba is a misogynist?

• How does his behavior with women deviate from traditional values?

• Does this make him less of a misogynist?

• Do any of his behaviors make him more "free"?

Part 3) How does Zorba's description of Zeus, the overworked love slave, contradict his misogyny? Does it support it?

Short Answer Key

1. Which character reveals that he had a son who died at the age of three?

Zorba.

2. For what action does Zorba grow proud of the narrator?

The narrator finally pursues the widow.

3. How does the narrator respond to the bishop's theories on religion?

"Those theories may save many souls."

4. What is the statue of Our Lady of Revenge notorious for?

Killing an Algerian army.

5. What causes Zorba to become infuriated after Hortense's death?

The narrator does not have the answers to his questions.

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