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CN English-American literature test paper (April, 2008) III

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III.Questions and Answers(24 points in all, 6 for each)

45.“ ‘My boy!’ said the old gentleman, leaning over the desk. Oliver started at the sound. He might be excused for doing so, for the words were kindly said, and strange sounds frighten one. He trembled violently, and burst into tears.”(from Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist)Explain why Oliver Twist started first, then trembled violently and burst into tears when the words were “kindly” said.

The boy started at the words because kind words were not expected; it is (was, must be) the first time in all his life, that Oliver Twist had ever been "kindly" greeted; strange sounds may predict another suffering/misfortune/torture.

46.It is said that B. Shaw’s play, Mrs. Warren’s Profession, has a strong realistic theme, which fully reflects the dramatist’s Fabianist idea. Try to summarize this theme briefly.

A. As one of the influential members of the Fabian Society, Shaw regarded the establishment of socialism by the emancipation of land and industrial capital from individual and class ownership as the final goal.
B. As a realistic dramatist, he took the modern social issues as his subjects. Most of his plays are concerned with political, economic, moral, or religious problems.
C. Mrs.Warren's Profession is a play about the economic oppression of women.

47.“In your rocking-chair, by your window dreaming, shall you long, alone. In your rocking-chair, by your window, shall you dream such happiness as you may never feel.”(from Theodore Dreiser’s Sister Carrie)What idea can you draw from the “rocking-chair”?

A. The rocking-chair is a symbol standing for fate. It is like a cradle that makes one feel peaceful.
B. It is also like tide that ever goes on with life, the destiny of which is uncertain.

48.Why are naturalists inevitably pessimistic in their view?

A. Naturalism was greatly influenced by Darwin's evolutionary theory and French literature.
B. Naturalists accepted the more negative implications of Darwin's theory and used it to count for the behavior of those characters in literary works who were conceived as more or less complex combinations of inherited attributes, their habits conditioned by social and economic forces.
C. Naturalism is evolved from realism when the author's tone in writing becomes less serious and less sympathetic but more ironic and more pessimistic.

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