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. For what action is Zorba trying to make up for by his actions in Chapter 18?

2. How do the negotiations over land between Zorba and the abbot begin?

3. Who closes Hortense's eyes when she dies?

4. Who challenges Zorba to a knife fight near the widow's garden?

5. What gift does Madame Hortense present to Zorba when he returns from the monastery?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why do you think the narrator's good friend, the soldier, is not named until his death?

2. When writing letters to Madame Hortense, what does the narrator have to do?

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. How are Zorba's final moments described?

5. What does Zorba say about women when the narrator reveals that he has proposed to Madame Hortense on his behalf?

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

7. Describe the incident that prompted the monastery icon's name to be changed from Our Lady of Mercy to Our Lady of Revenge.

8. In Chapter 16, what did the sleeping workmen do who when they heard Zorba playing his Santuri?

9. What does Madame Hortense actually think of Zorba?

10. How does the narrator describe eternity in Chapter 15?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

One theme throughout the story is that God and the devil may be one and the same creature.

Part 1) How does the narrator's writing of the Buddha Manuscript exhibit this theme?

Part 2) How does the atheist Zorba's description of both God and the devil support this theme?

Part 3) What does this mean in the narrator's search for ultimate "freedom"?

Essay Topic 2

After Zorba's return from Candia, the narrator attempts to convince him that the power of a mind concentrated on one thing is the singular path to great accomplishment.

Part 1) How does Zorba respond to this attempted lesson?

• Is the narrator's lesson on meditation received and practiced or do both file it with the "Void"?

• Do you agree with the narrator?

Part 2) How might concentration on a single thing threaten Zorba's way of life and very existence?

Part 3) Zorba has returned from Candia with an appearance altered to look younger. This is a strange juxtaposition to the narrator's focus on meditation.

• Are there parallels in the two men's behaviors?

• Or are the simply at odds with one another?

Essay Topic 3

The narrator's intention in the Buddha Manuscript shifts throughout the course of the novel.

Part 1) What does the manuscript begin as, and what does it become? What instigates the change in the narrator's intention?

Part 2) Do you think the narrator achieves his revised goal or his original goal with the finished product?

Part 3) Zorba constantly reinforces that living in the physical world is living in the mystery.

• Do you think that language is physical?

• Could the narrator have created a physical change in his life simply by writing the Buddha Manuscript?

Short Answer Key

1. For what action is Zorba trying to make up for by his actions in Chapter 18?

Spending all of the narrator's money in Candia.

2. How do the negotiations over land between Zorba and the abbot begin?

The abbot tries to charge more money than agreed upon.

3. Who closes Hortense's eyes when she dies?

Zorba.

4. Who challenges Zorba to a knife fight near the widow's garden?

Manolakas.

5. What gift does Madame Hortense present to Zorba when he returns from the monastery?

A pair of wedding rings.

Short Essay Answer Key

1. Why do you think the narrator's good friend, the soldier, is not named until his death?

It may be to emphasize the theme of the importance of human interaction and companionship. Just as the narrator is gaining the realization that human connection is essential, his friend dies and his friend's name is revealed. His friend has also fulfilled his passion, which was to serve his country. His name is then symbolically mythologized when it appears in the story.

2. When writing letters to Madame Hortense, what does the narrator have to do?

The narrator must pretend he is Zorba. Therefore, he must take on Zorba's characteristics in his writings while looking for the best in Madame Hortense.

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. How are Zorba's final moments described?

Zorba dies howling and laughing like an animal.

5. What does Zorba say about women when the narrator reveals that he has proposed to Madame Hortense on his behalf?

Zorba says that women are delicate creatures and are unable to handle such jokes.

6. 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.

7. Describe the incident that prompted the monastery icon's name to be changed from Our Lady of Mercy to Our Lady of Revenge.

In ancient times Algerians raided and set fire to the monastery. When they passed by the statue, it is said that she came to life, leaped down, and began stabbing the warriors with her spear until she had killed them all.

8. In Chapter 16, what did the sleeping workmen do who when they heard Zorba playing his Santuri?

They got up, circled around him and began dancing to the music he played.

9. What does Madame Hortense actually think of Zorba?

Madame Hortense thinks Zorba will make a useful husband but does not think much of him above and beyond that role. She wishes also that he were as exciting and accomplished as her former lovers.

10. How does the narrator describe eternity in Chapter 15?

He describes it as being each minute that passes.

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