The midterm for African literature will involve an in-class essay on the reading this semester, including Things Fall Apart, How Europe Underdeveloped Africa, King Leopold's Ghost, Xala, Unbowed, Monique and the Mango Rains, Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits, A Long Way Gone.
Before the exam students will be provided with a list of about ten questions. Students should prepare outlines and ideas for answering each of these questions. On the day of the exam three of the questions will be indicated as the exam questions and student's will write answers to two of these. No notes will be allowed during the exam period. It is strongly recommended that students meet in groups to prepare for the exam.
Questions designed by the students and edited by the professor:
Instructions: At the time of the exam I will indicate three of the questions below and you then chose two of those and write a thoughtful essay on each one. I will focus on your ideas, so have lots of good, and detailed ideas for each question. Write as much as you can in the time allowed. I consider the exam as a whole -- between both of your essays refer to many of the books we have read and demonstrate your careful understanding and thinking about our reading. Don’t just focus on a couple of texts. The exam is “closed book” meaning no books or notes; however, before the exam you are strongly encouraged to prepare with your classmates, and make careful outlines, share ideas, and study together.
1) A new generation is coming to the forefront in Africa. How are daughters portrayed in the texts we have read? Do they support or reject their fathers and the norms of their societies? Are they agents of women’s emancipation? (Micah & Brittany H.)
2) How is the Muslim religion portrayed differently by different characters? Where does Islam seem to be headed in African culture? (Micah and Brittany H.)
3) How does the historical analysis in Walter Rodney’s How Europe Underdeveloped Africa relate to several of the texts we have read? (Jake, Allison, Nate, Tom)
4) How have the texts and discussions/class meetings in our class influenced your thinking about making a difference in the world? (Jake, Allison, Nate, Tom)
5) What is the role of nature, the natural world, and/or the environment in texts we have read? (Jake, Allison, Nate, Tom)
6) Compare and contrast the portrayal of polygamy in three texts we have read. (Steffany, Malcolm, Ashleys, Lauren, Bethany, Erin, Brittany L.)
7) Choose two women characters who emerged in some way as a leader in their community and explain why they were thought of as a leader. How does this character/person change your view of women in Africa? (Steffany, Malcolm, Ashleys, Lauren, Bethany, Erin, Brittany L.)
8) How do conflicts or issues in the broader community impact the personal and family relations between individuals in several texts we have read? (Kristine, Vanessa, Kendra)
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