71 pages 2 hours read

Joseph Kesselring

Arsenic and Old Lace

Fiction | Play | Adult | Published in 1941

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Exam Questions

Multiple Choice and Long Answer questions create ideal opportunities for whole-text review, unit exam, or summative assessments.

1. What does Arsenic and Old Lace imply about murderous tendencies?

A) It is inherited.

B) It is unavoidable.

C)  It is normalized.

D) It is a learned behavior.

2. What does the Brewster family have a history of?

A) Goodness

B) Wealth

C) Criminal behavior

D) Psychiatric conditions

3. What plot scenario serves as comedic relief in the satirical play?

A) The sweet elderly sisters who murder frequently

B) Jonathan’s manipulation of his aunts

C) Mortimer’s forgetfulness in losing his manuscript

D) Teddy’s role in digging the Panama Canal

4. What is the purpose of Kesselring’s dark comedy in Arsenic and Old Lace?

A) To make light of serious issues

B) To instruct the audience on taboo subjects

C) To aid in acceptance of difficult subject matter

D) To serve as a coping mechanism in similar circumstances

5. Which of the following best describes Jonathan’s character?

A) Cunning

B) Flippant

C) Determined

D) Terrifying

6. What is unusual about the way the Brewsters discuss their victims?

A) They show no remorse and bury them without care.

B) They discuss the bodies as though no one is surprised by the victims.

C) They are polite and humanize them by calling them by their appropriate titles.

D) They refuse to bury the bodies in the same grave out of respect for the victims.

7. What is the mood of the scene when Mortimer calls his aunt’s behavior a “very bad habit?”

A) Dramatic

B) Comedic

C) Carefree

D) Tense