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

2. What concept does the narrator come up with when formulating his ideas about death?

3. Who waits outside for Hortense to die in order to loot her belongings?

4. In Chapter 16,what type of power does the narrator attempt to describe?

5. What do the narrator and Zorba do on Easter Sunday?

Short Essay Questions

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

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

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

4. In his third theory of religion, what does the bishop give as God's reason for sending religion to the masses?

5. What does Madame Hortense actually think of Zorba?

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

7. How are Zorba's final moments described?

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

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

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

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Zorba offers a range of religious thought. At times, he calls himself an atheist. Later, he describes God and the devil to be exactly like himself. Still later, he rewrites Christianity, claiming that Jesus is an heir to Zeus.

Part 1) Describe Zorba's relationship to the religion of the villagers. How does he react to it?

Part 2) Based on dialogue and actions, Is Zorba truly an atheist? Why?

Part 3) How does the irony of Zorba's religious talk instruct the narrator on his path to exorcising his own philosophical thought?

Essay Topic 2

Being present in the moment is a major theme in Zorba the Greek. Kazantzakis utilizes Zorba to literally reinforce this to the narrator but provides him with an array of symbolic messages as well.

Part 1) Describe the narrator's memory of destroying the butterfly cocoon. How did this impact him?

• How does this make him more receptive to Zorba's advice?

• How does it make him less so?

Part 2) Zorba says that the act of celebrating is more important than the object of celebration.

• How is this a message of presence?

• Could Zorba's atheism be a similar symbol of presence? How so?

Part 3) The narrator believes that he can channel his sexual energy for the widow into the Buddha manuscript.

• Do you agree that such an act is possible?

• Is it possible for him to stay present in his physical body as he attempts this?

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

Manolakas.

2. What concept does the narrator come up with when formulating his ideas about death?

Sacred awe.

3. Who waits outside for Hortense to die in order to loot her belongings?

Dirge singers.

4. In Chapter 16,what type of power does the narrator attempt to describe?

The power of the mind concentrated on one thing.

5. What do the narrator and Zorba do on Easter Sunday?

Make a feast for Madame Hortense.

Short Essay Answer Key

1. 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.

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

He describes it as being each minute that passes.

3. 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.

4. In his third theory of religion, what does the bishop give as God's reason for sending religion to the masses?

He says that God sent religion as an act of mercy for the masses in order that they might experience living in "eternity." The bishop believes that only a few people on earth are able to live an eternity during their natural lives on earth.

5. 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.

6. 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.

7. How are Zorba's final moments described?

Zorba dies howling and laughing like an animal.

8. 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.

9. 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.

10. 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.

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