GRE Subject Test: Literature in English : Contexts of American Plays Before 1925

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All GRE Subject Test: Literature in English Resources

1 Diagnostic Test 158 Practice Tests Question of the Day Flashcards Learn by Concept

Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Contexts Of American Plays Before 1925

Act One, Scene One

A section of country highway. The road runs diagonally from the left, forward, to the right, rear, and can be seen in the distance winding toward the horizon like a pale ribbon between the low, rolling hills with their freshly plowed fields clearly divided from each other, checkerboard fashion, by the lines of stone walls and rough snake fences.

… At the rise of the curtain, ROBERT MAYO is discovered sitting on the fence. He is a tall, slender young man of twenty-three. There is a touch of the poet about him expressed in his high forehead and wide, dark eyes. His features are delicate and refined, leaning to weakness in the mouth and chin. He is dressed in gray corduroy trousers pushed into high-laced boots, and a blue flannel shirt with a bright colored tie. He is reading a book by the fading sunset light. He shuts this, keeping a finger in to mark the place, and turns his head toward the horizon, gazing out over the fields and hills. His lips move as if he were reciting something to himself.

His brother ANDREW comes along the road from the right, returning from his work in the fields. He is twenty-seven years old, an opposite type to ROBERT: husky, sun-bronzed, hand some in a large-featured, manly fashion a son of the soil, intelligent in a shrewd way, but with nothing of the intellectual about him. He wears overalls, leather boots, a gray flannel shirt open at the neck, and a soft, mud-stained hat pushed back on his head. He stops to talk to ROBERT, leaning on the hoe he carries.

During what decade did this play premiere and win a Pulitzer Prize for Drama?

Possible Answers:

1920s

1930s

1890s

1900s

1910s

Correct answer:

1920s

Explanation:

The play debuted on Broadway in 1920 and won the Pulitzer the same year. It has been revived several times since.

Passage adapted from Eugene O’Neill’s Beyond the Horizon, I.i (1920; 1921 ed.)

Example Question #2 : Contexts Of American Plays Before 1925

Act One, Scene One

A section of country highway. The road runs diagonally from the left, forward, to the right, rear, and can be seen in the distance winding toward the horizon like a pale ribbon between the low, rolling hills with their freshly plowed fields clearly divided from each other, checkerboard fashion, by the lines of stone walls and rough snake fences.

… At the rise of the curtain, ROBERT MAYO is discovered sitting on the fence. He is a tall, slender young man of twenty-three. There is a touch of the poet about him expressed in his high forehead and wide, dark eyes. His features are delicate and refined, leaning to weakness in the mouth and chin. He is dressed in gray corduroy trousers pushed into high-laced boots, and a blue flannel shirt with a bright colored tie. He is reading a book by the fading sunset light. He shuts this, keeping a finger in to mark the place, and turns his head toward the horizon, gazing out over the fields and hills. His lips move as if he were reciting something to himself.

His brother ANDREW comes along the road from the right, returning from his work in the fields. He is twenty-seven years old, an opposite type to ROBERT: husky, sun-bronzed, hand some in a large-featured, manly fashion a son of the soil, intelligent in a shrewd way, but with nothing of the intellectual about him. He wears overalls, leather boots, a gray flannel shirt open at the neck, and a soft, mud-stained hat pushed back on his head. He stops to talk to ROBERT, leaning on the hoe he carries.

This playwright also wrote all but which of the following works?

Possible Answers:

Long Day’s Journey Into Night

Ah, Wilderness!

A Moon for the Misbegotten

All God's Chillun Got Wings

The Seagull

Correct answer:

The Seagull

Explanation:

The Seagull is an 1896 play by the Russian writer Anton Chekhov. All of the rest of the plays were written by Eugene O’Neill. (Ah, Wildnerness! is one of his few comedies, while Long Day’s Journey Into Night is his most famous work.)

Passage adapted from Eugene O’Neill’s Beyond the Horizon, I.i (1920; 1921 ed.)

Example Question #3 : Contexts Of American Plays Before 1925

Act One, Scene One

A section of country highway. The road runs diagonally from the left, forward, to the right, rear, and can be seen in the distance winding toward the horizon like a pale ribbon between the low, rolling hills with their freshly plowed fields clearly divided from each other, checkerboard fashion, by the lines of stone walls and rough snake fences.

. . . At the rise of the curtain, ROBERT MAYO is discovered sitting on the fence. He is a tall, slender young man of twenty-three. There is a touch of the poet about him expressed in his high forehead and wide, dark eyes. His features are delicate and refined, leaning to weakness in the mouth and chin. He is dressed in gray corduroy trousers pushed into high-laced boots, and a blue flannel shirt with a bright colored tie. He is reading a book by the fading sunset light. He shuts this, keeping a finger in to mark the place, and turns his head toward the horizon, gazing out over the fields and hills. His lips move as if he were reciting something to himself.

His brother ANDREW comes along the road from the right, returning from his work in the fields. He is twenty-seven years old, an opposite type to ROBERT: husky, sun-bronzed, hand some in a large-featured, manly fashion a son of the soil, intelligent in a shrewd way, but with nothing of the intellectual about him. He wears overalls, leather boots, a gray flannel shirt open at the neck, and a soft, mud-stained hat pushed back on his head. He stops to talk to ROBERT, leaning on the hoe he carries.

Who is the author of this play?

Possible Answers:

Leonard Bernstein

Arthur Miller

Tennessee Williams

George Gershwin

Eugene O’Neill

Correct answer:

Eugene O’Neill

Explanation:

These are the opening stage directions for Eugene O’Neill’s Beyond the Horizon. It is the playwright’s first full-length play.

Passage adapted from Eugene O’Neill’s Beyond the Horizon, I.i (1920; 1921 ed.)

Example Question #4 : Contexts Of American Plays Before 1925

Who is the author of A Punch for Judy?

Possible Answers:

Philip Barry

Maxwell Anderson

Eugene O’Neill

Dorothy Heyward

Elmer Rice

Correct answer:

Philip Barry

Explanation:

A Punch for Judy (1920) is one of American playwright Philip Barry’s earliest works.

Example Question #5 : Contexts Of American Plays Before 1925

During what decade was A Punch for Judy first performed?

Possible Answers:

1920s

1880s

1860s

1900s

1940s

Correct answer:

1920s

Explanation:

This play premiered in 1920, when Broadway shows were just beginning to develop into a recognizable form.

Example Question #6 : Contexts Of American Plays Before 1925

What other famous American play did the author of A Punch for Judy write?

Possible Answers:

The Philadelphia Story

The Iceman Cometh

Les Blancs

All My Sons

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Correct answer:

The Philadelphia Story

Explanation:

Philip Barry is best known for his plays Holiday (1928) and The Philadelphia Story (1939), both of which later became films starring Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955) is by Tennessee Williams, All My Sons (1947) is by Arthur Miller, The Iceman Cometh (1946) is by Eugene O’Neill, and Les Blancs (1970) is by Lorraine Hansberry.

Example Question #7 : Contexts Of American Plays Before 1925

The play title A Punch for Judy alludes to what earlier genre of plays?

Possible Answers:

medieval morality plays

Greek satyr plays

medieval miracle plays

British puppet shows

French farces

Correct answer:

British puppet shows

Explanation:

A Punch for Judy (1920) is named after the violent, comedic Punch and Judy plays, which became popular in England in the 1600s and were derived from earlier Italian comedic forms. These plays continued to be popular in Britain through Victorian times and into the 20th century, particularly in seaside holiday towns.

Example Question #8 : Contexts Of American Plays Before 1925

Act One, Scene One

A section of country highway. The road runs diagonally from the left, forward, to the right, rear, and can be seen in the distance winding toward the horizon like a pale ribbon between the low, rolling hills with their freshly plowed fields clearly divided from each other, checkerboard fashion, by the lines of stone walls and rough snake fences.

… At the rise of the curtain, ROBERT MAYO is discovered sitting on the fence. He is a tall, slender young man of twenty-three. There is a touch of the poet about him expressed in his high forehead and wide, dark eyes. His features are delicate and refined, leaning to weakness in the mouth and chin. He is dressed in gray corduroy trousers pushed into high-laced boots, and a blue flannel shirt with a bright colored tie. He is reading a book by the fading sunset light. He shuts this, keeping a finger in to mark the place, and turns his head toward the horizon, gazing out over the fields and hills. His lips move as if he were reciting something to himself.

His brother ANDREW comes along the road from the right, returning from his work in the fields. He is twenty-seven years old, an opposite type to ROBERT: husky, sun-bronzed, hand some in a large-featured, manly fashion a son of the soil, intelligent in a shrewd way, but with nothing of the intellectual about him. He wears overalls, leather boots, a gray flannel shirt open at the neck, and a soft, mud-stained hat pushed back on his head. He stops to talk to ROBERT, leaning on the hoe he carries.

Which of the following is not a character in this play?

Possible Answers:

Ruth Atkins

James Mayo

Kate Mayo

Vanya

Captain Dick Scott

Correct answer:

Vanya

Explanation:

James Mayo, Kate Mayo, Captain Dick Scott, and Ruth Atkins are all central characters in Beyond the Horizon. Even if you weren’t familiar with the cast of this play, you could have recognized that Vanya is the protagonist of Anton Chekhov’s 1897 play Uncle Vanya.

Passage adapted from Eugene O’Neill’s Beyond the Horizon, I.i (1920; 1921 ed.)

All GRE Subject Test: Literature in English Resources

1 Diagnostic Test 158 Practice Tests Question of the Day Flashcards Learn by Concept
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