Answer The Following Questions


orld Literature I

Unit Test #3

Section I—General Information

Directions: Select three questions from this section (11 points each)

1. Define Renaissance. Explain how the term applies to literature specifically.

2. Briefly trace the history of the European Renaissance. Be sure to include specific impacts on specific countries in your discussion.

3. Characterize the literature of the Renaissance Period. Include at least three different characteristics in your discussion.

4. Discuss the “code of behavior” of the average Renaissance person. How is this different from the Middle Ages? Explain. How did this attitude affect the literature of the Renaissance? 5. Give specifics to support your answer.

Explain the quote: “Much of Renaissance literature takes its character and strength from the tension generated by the simultaneous exaltation and pessimism about the human condition.” Use at least two specific examples to support your answer.

Section II—Literary Selections

Directions: Select two questions from Machiavelli and Montaigne and four questions from Shakespeare (6 points each).


5. Discuss Machiavelli’s political background. How does this background relate to his writings? Explain and give specific examples.

6. According to Machiavelli, what characteristics make a good and efficient ruler?

7. How does Machiavelli feel about Fortune/Chance? Explain.


8. Justify calling Montaigne “the father of the modern essay”.

9. Discuss the major points Montaigne makes in “The Inconsistency of Our Actions”.

10. Discuss Montaigne’s view of vice and repentance.


11. Characterize King Lear. Be sure to include his tragic flaw.

12. Discuss the use of symbolism in the play. Give 2 specific examples to support your answer.

13. Explain the importance of the words nothing/nothingness. Give 2 examples to support your answer.

14. Discuss the use of appearance vs. reality. What importance does it play? Give one specific example to support your answer.

15. Discuss the use of nature/natural images in the play. What significance does it play in the development of the plot? Explain.

16. What purpose does the Fool play? Be sure to include the use/importance of humor in the play.

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