Some time back, I and a couple of other students in a foreign language honorary came up with a series of questions for a fun activity called cultural jeopardy. We did this two years in a row, which gave me a chance to refine and correct the list of questions. If you wish to test your knowledge, I've reproduced them below. You can see the answers by clicking on the link at the bottom of this post. Feel free to let me know if you find any inaccuracies.
Geography1) What is the tallest mountain range in the world?
2) Which is the second longest river in the world?
3) Name one of the two countries in South America that Brazil does not touch.
4) To what country is the wombat native?
5) Name three countries through which the equator passes.
6) Imagine a ship traveling from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean via the Panama Canal. Will its route through the canal take it in a predominantly westerly or easterly direction?
7) What Mexican canyon is four times larger and more than 1000 feet deeper than the Grand Canyon?
8) What is the major source of the Nile River?
9) How many time zones does the Trans-Siberian Railroad cross, give or take one?
10) Name three of the four African countries that converge at Victoria Falls?
Language1) What is the official language of Brazil?
2) Name 3 European languages that are currently official national languages somewhere in Africa.
3) What language curently has the most native speakers?
4)Name 3 of the 11 official languages of South Africa.
5)Name three dialects/languages spoken in the Iberian Peninsula.
6) What language, originally invented by linguist Marc Okrand for Star Trek, currently has its own language institute and quarterly scholarly journal?
7) Name three countries where Portuguese is spoken as an official language.
8) Which is not an Indo-European language: Serbo-Croatian, Celtic, Finnish, or Hindi
9) On December 18th’ 1996, the school board of Oakland, CA was the first to officially acknowledge
the status of what as a separate language?
10) Where does Cyrillic script come from?
11) In 1965 William Shatner starred in a foreign language film called The Incubus, in which he and the other characters spoke entirely in a language other than English. What was that language?
12) What is the only Romance language to retain a partial case system from vulgar Latin?
Culture1) In which country was it a custom to bind the women’s feet?
2) What is Dracula’s nationality (according to current political geography)?
3) What famous Irishman is reported to have driven the snakes out of Ireland?
4) Name two things that traditionally are placed on an alter during a día de los muertos celebration (day of the dead).
5) What is the name of the capital building in Russia?
6) Name four of the seven wonders of the ancient world.
7) What is the only country to have a birth rate of zero?
8) Where is the Nike swoosh from originally?
9) From what country is Pippi Longstocking?
10) What country invented goldfish?
Food1) What is the main vegetable ingredient of Basboosa?
2) What is the ingredient in pão de queijo (other than cheese) that gives it its gooey consistency?
3) Where does chocolate come from?
4) What country originated couscous (kooskoos)?
5) What country farms dogs for food?
6) Where is vegimite commonly eaten?
7) What is a traditional cheese pizza called in most countries of the world, including Italy, Zimbabwe, and Brazil? Hint: it is named after a popular queen.
8) Who introduced spaghetti to Italy?
9) What type of food does a tortilla refer to in Spain?
10) Where does edam cheese come from?
History1) What country resulted from a loophole in the Treaty of Tordesillas?
2) What year did Germany formally reunite?
3) Which European power entered and controlled India for some time?
4) What is the only man-made structure visible from the moon thus far?
5) What was the last country in the Western Hemisphere to abolish slavery?
6) What are the literary origins of the Babelfish?
7) In what decade did Pakistan and India separate?
8) What famous Latinamerican revolutionary wrote a book entitled, “The Motorcycle Diaries”?
9) What was Ghandi’s diet?
10) Why were the Vikings unafraid they would sail off the ends of the earth?
Art and Architecture
1) What country is the painter, Monet, from?
2) Who painted the Sistine Chapel?
3) What country is Picasso from?
4) In what symbolic shape were early cathedrals built?
5) How long did it take to build the Taj Mahal?
6) From what language does the word “landscape” originate?
7) Where is the Bayeux Tapestry, one of the most important pictorial works surviving from the Middle
8) Who wrote Crime and Punishment?
9) Where is the tallest building in the world?
10) Who designed the architecture of Brasilia?
5--Ecuador/Colombia/Brazil/Gabon/Democratic Republic of Congo/Uganda/Kenya/Somalia/Indonesia
6--Easterly (I know it's hard to believe, but you can verify this on a map.)
7--The Copper Canyon in Mexico
9--7 (6 or 8 are acceptable.)