Monsters: Exam 1

English 338 — Fall 2009
Washington State University

Monsters in Literature and Film:
Exam 1

I. IDENTIFICATIONS. [Total 26 points.]

Maybe match Column A with Column B; or identify “the children of the night”; or explain the meaning of the name Beowulf: that kind of question. These “Griefs and avenging Cares” will be inflicted individually and intracerebrally during the scheduled class period, Friday, October 9th. Put on your thinking caps and press the “fry” button.

II. QUOTATIONS. [Total 50 points; answer 10 for 5 points each.]

A combination of identification and, more importantly, significance questions will follow quotations from the works or film clips selected for their representativeness of our discussions on key points during these first weeks. This is not Trivial Pursuit, and I derive no glee from stumping you; but you do need to recognize key ideas and moments from the works and from our class interactions. I have added web pages to the site with my notes on some of the key works. But if you have read and paid attention in class, only a close review of your own notes is necessary for preparation. Otherwise, as Lurch the butler would say, “Rrrrrrrrrr.”

III. TAKE-HOME ESSAY. [Total 24 points.]

Answer the following question thoroughly and precisely, to about two (2) pages, double-spaced. Answers should be virtuoso pieces of brilliance manifested in impressive eloquence, with facile reference to specifics from the works, properly documented (though no Works list is necessary). The essay is due at in class on exam day — Friday, October 9th, 1:10 pm — to accompany the other in-class components of the test.

“Repression turns hunger into horror.”
So claims monster scholar James Twitchell. Is he right? Discuss this principle as it relates to monsters in literature and film, and be sure to include some pre-Gothic examples (monsters from classical mythology and/or the medieval period) as well as our main three: the Frankenstein monster, vampires in Dracula, and Jekyll/Hyde.


I.Short Answer. [Total 26 points.]

Explain the word-play, significance, or irony implicit the following names.

Beowulf —

Frankenstein (the monster) —

Victor Frankenstein —

Jonathan Harker —

Lucy Westerna —

Count de Ville —

Mr. Hyde —

Dr. Jekyll —

Gabriel John Utterson —

* * *

Identify the person or thing underlined in each of the following.

“I shall be with you on your wedding-night.” _________________________

“He is not easy to describe. There is something wrong with his appearance, something displeasing, something down-right detestable.”


“Strange to say, there were hairs in the center of the palm…. His breath was rank.”


“He made people shiver with his blank stare….
It turned out he was an idiot.”


* * *

II.Quotations. Answer fully but concisely ten (10) of the following. [Total 50 points.]

“With filthy claws their odious meal repeat.
And mix their loathsome ordures with their meat.
I bid my friends for vengeance then prepare,
And with the hellish nation wage the war.”

Identify the “hellish nation” and the author.
What is the nature of the speaker’s ignorance (for which he is soon “chewed out”)?

* * *

“Not without cause did Hoc’s daughter lament the decree of destiny when morning came and she might see, under the sky, the slaughter of kinsmen — where before she had the greatest of world’s joy.”

“Whoever she was / who brought forth this flower of manhood, / if she is still alive, that woman can say / that in her labour the Lord of Ages / bestowed a grace on her.”

What is unusual about these moments in terms of the cultural context of their source?
In what way does this pair of passages function in the literary piece?

* * *

“There he opened his safe, took from the most private part of it a document endorsed on the envelope as ____________’s Will, and sat down with a clouded brow to study its contents.”

Fill in the blank and identify the author.
Explain the significance of the most obvious word play.

* * *

“Compose yourself.”
“Compose yourself.”

Despite numerous similarities, what would you say is the most significant difference in the doppelganger phenomenon between Frankenstein and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde?

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