Test: Reading Comprehension (Based On Social Sciences) - 2


20 Questions MCQ Test Topic-wise Past Year Questions for CAT | Test: Reading Comprehension (Based On Social Sciences) - 2


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QUESTION: 1

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Conscious of her approaching death, she has broken at last a lifetime’s practice of concealment, of stashing the truth away in the manner of the papers and mementoes mouldering in her battered travel trunk. The woman in her eighties (her bones aching in the humid heat of summer, her step cautious in winter’s frozen treachery) unwinds the past, sends it twisting and spiralling in an unstoppable black flow across the pages. The urgency of the project is insistent: impending foreclosure flays her on, reopening old wounds, forcing her to confront life in all its bewilderment and pain.
This, in the sparest of terms, is the framework of The Blind Assassin, the novel which has won for the Canadian writer, Margaret Atwood, this year’s Booker Prize. Her previous near-winners were The Handmaid’s Tale, Cat’s Eye, and Alias Grace. In her latest book, Atwood explores again a theme central to her fictional universe: what happens to relationships, to human potential, to the possibility of happiness when women are kept subordinate, stultified by their inferior status and locked in silence.
Iris Chase, the woman who unravels her past across the pages of The Blind Assassin, is at first sight an improbable victim of history.
The granddaughter of an entrepreneur who built an empire out of the manufacture of buttons and cheap clothing for the masses, she has lived, for the most part of her life, cocooned from economic hardship. In her narrative, she conjures up the whimsical splendours of Avilion, the evocatively titled domain her grandparents built in celebration of their new wealth and status and the place where she spent her childhood. Reliving her marriage to a young tycoon with political ambitions, she takes us into the sumptuous between-theWars world of the highly moneyed: the fur-draped fashions, the dinner parties, the Atlantic crossings on luxury liners. Such landscapes, replete with nostalgia, have in our own times yielded rich pickings to advertisers and commercial film-makers aware of the power of the past. In Atwood’s case, however, evoking a class experience characterized by profligacy and privilege is not done to beguile us or set the book on course for film rights. Rather, it establishes a polarity between material advantage and emotional poverty, between the possibilities opened up by access to plenty and the reality of futile, empty lives. In a real sense, this is not only a political novel but also a morality tale.
In the book’s opening pages, information is thrown at the reader from a variety of sources: from a narrative we do not yet understand to be Iris’, from newspaper clippings, and from a book written by Laura Chase (Iris’ sister). The last carries immediate poignancy, for we already know Laura to be dead, her car having plunged from a bridge; there is speculation that it was suicide.
This choice of structure allows Atwood to introduce, from the start, a sense of the contentious nature of experience: there is a world of difference between the clipped prose of the pro-establishment local paper and the dead Laura’s unfolding of emotion (her novel is a high-intensity story of unmarried love which generated shock waves following its publication in the late 1940s). The structure also builds in elasticity, enabling the writer not only to throw the past against the present but also to change pace, to intensify and then release, in a way that tightens her hold on our sensibilities, propelling us deeper into the mystery. There is a further dimension to this structure: through it we, the readers, find ourselves repeatedly revising the assumptions we formed at the novel’s beginning. In the manner of a landscape viewed from a moving vantage point, the story shifts, rearranges itself, discloses elements once hidden from view. To specify the changes would be to give away too much of the plot, reducing the novel’s capacity to surprise and challenge. What Atwood is attempting, one senses, is not a bid for authorial cleverness designed to leave the reader stunned and bemused, but rather a journey towards the truth which invites her reader to question, reformulate and reinterpret. Despite its old technology form, this is an interactive novel.
For the reader who accepts the invitation, this is a journey into pain. Atwood wields her pen like the most deadly and delicate of knives, cutting through to the raw edge of emotion, exposing our areas of greatest vulnerability:  our relationships with others. Part of the stiletto sharpness of her writing derives from a use of language that is precise and alive to the sheer potency of words.
Atwood’s use of analogy, too, can bring the reader up short. When Iris’ father, lamed and broken, returns home in his uniform from the First World War, his medals “are like holes shot in the cloth, through which the dull gleam of his real, metal body can be seen”. On board a ship at the start of her honeymoon, Iris watches professional dancers perform a passionless tango accompanied by music that is “… jagged, hobbled — like a four-legged animal lurching on three legs; a crippled bull with its head down, lunging”.
This is also a book rich in tongue-in-cheek humour that at several points had me laughing out loud. In a narrative that has a strong aural quality to it, a pervasive sense of voice play, Atwood makes artful use of the character of Renee, the housekeeper at the ancestral home to whom Iris and Laura, having lost their own mother, turn for maternal attention.
A working class woman with a nononsense outlook on life, Renee offers, through her repertoire of proverbs, sayings and catchphrases, a running commentary on events that both entertains and unsettles. But the primary source of humour is Iris herself: curmudgeonly and difficult in old age, she is possessed of a capacity for wry observation, an ability to lay bare the incongruities of life, with humour jostling the sadness.

(2014)

Q. If medals “are like holes shot in the cloth”, then Atwood is a critic of

Solution:

Medals are symbols of the glorification of war. By stating that medals are nothing more than holes in a cloth, Atwood is criticizing the glorification of war.

QUESTION: 2

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Conscious of her approaching death, she has broken at last a lifetime’s practice of concealment, of stashing the truth away in the manner of the papers and mementoes mouldering in her battered travel trunk. The woman in her eighties (her bones aching in the humid heat of summer, her step cautious in winter’s frozen treachery) unwinds the past, sends it twisting and spiralling in an unstoppable black flow across the pages. The urgency of the project is insistent: impending foreclosure flays her on, reopening old wounds, forcing her to confront life in all its bewilderment and pain.
This, in the sparest of terms, is the framework of The Blind Assassin, the novel which has won for the Canadian writer, Margaret Atwood, this year’s Booker Prize. Her previous near-winners were The Handmaid’s Tale, Cat’s Eye, and Alias Grace. In her latest book, Atwood explores again a theme central to her fictional universe: what happens to relationships, to human potential, to the possibility of happiness when women are kept subordinate, stultified by their inferior status and locked in silence.
Iris Chase, the woman who unravels her past across the pages of The Blind Assassin, is at first sight an improbable victim of history.
The granddaughter of an entrepreneur who built an empire out of the manufacture of buttons and cheap clothing for the masses, she has lived, for the most part of her life, cocooned from economic hardship. In her narrative, she conjures up the whimsical splendours of Avilion, the evocatively titled domain her grandparents built in celebration of their new wealth and status and the place where she spent her childhood. Reliving her marriage to a young tycoon with political ambitions, she takes us into the sumptuous between-theWars world of the highly moneyed: the fur-draped fashions, the dinner parties, the Atlantic crossings on luxury liners. Such landscapes, replete with nostalgia, have in our own times yielded rich pickings to advertisers and commercial film-makers aware of the power of the past. In Atwood’s case, however, evoking a class experience characterized by profligacy and privilege is not done to beguile us or set the book on course for film rights. Rather, it establishes a polarity between material advantage and emotional poverty, between the possibilities opened up by access to plenty and the reality of futile, empty lives. In a real sense, this is not only a political novel but also a morality tale.
In the book’s opening pages, information is thrown at the reader from a variety of sources: from a narrative we do not yet understand to be Iris’, from newspaper clippings, and from a book written by Laura Chase (Iris’ sister). The last carries immediate poignancy, for we already know Laura to be dead, her car having plunged from a bridge; there is speculation that it was suicide.
This choice of structure allows Atwood to introduce, from the start, a sense of the contentious nature of experience: there is a world of difference between the clipped prose of the pro-establishment local paper and the dead Laura’s unfolding of emotion (her novel is a high-intensity story of unmarried love which generated shock waves following its publication in the late 1940s). The structure also builds in elasticity, enabling the writer not only to throw the past against the present but also to change pace, to intensify and then release, in a way that tightens her hold on our sensibilities, propelling us deeper into the mystery. There is a further dimension to this structure: through it we, the readers, find ourselves repeatedly revising the assumptions we formed at the novel’s beginning. In the manner of a landscape viewed from a moving vantage point, the story shifts, rearranges itself, discloses elements once hidden from view. To specify the changes would be to give away too much of the plot, reducing the novel’s capacity to surprise and challenge. What Atwood is attempting, one senses, is not a bid for authorial cleverness designed to leave the reader stunned and bemused, but rather a journey towards the truth which invites her reader to question, reformulate and reinterpret. Despite its old technology form, this is an interactive novel.
For the reader who accepts the invitation, this is a journey into pain. Atwood wields her pen like the most deadly and delicate of knives, cutting through to the raw edge of emotion, exposing our areas of greatest vulnerability:  our relationships with others. Part of the stiletto sharpness of her writing derives from a use of language that is precise and alive to the sheer potency of words.
Atwood’s use of analogy, too, can bring the reader up short. When Iris’ father, lamed and broken, returns home in his uniform from the First World War, his medals “are like holes shot in the cloth, through which the dull gleam of his real, metal body can be seen”. On board a ship at the start of her honeymoon, Iris watches professional dancers perform a passionless tango accompanied by music that is “… jagged, hobbled — like a four-legged animal lurching on three legs; a crippled bull with its head down, lunging”.
This is also a book rich in tongue-in-cheek humour that at several points had me laughing out loud. In a narrative that has a strong aural quality to it, a pervasive sense of voice play, Atwood makes artful use of the character of Renee, the housekeeper at the ancestral home to whom Iris and Laura, having lost their own mother, turn for maternal attention.
A working class woman with a nononsense outlook on life, Renee offers, through her repertoire of proverbs, sayings and catchphrases, a running commentary on events that both entertains and unsettles. But the primary source of humour is Iris herself: curmudgeonly and difficult in old age, she is possessed of a capacity for wry observation, an ability to lay bare the incongruities of life, with humour jostling the sadness.

(2014)

Q. Pick the odd one out:

Solution:

Options (a), (b) and (c) are different features of Atwood's novel. Option (d) is the odd one out - the author has used this term to describe a character in the novel.

QUESTION: 3

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Conscious of her approaching death, she has broken at last a lifetime’s practice of concealment, of stashing the truth away in the manner of the papers and mementoes mouldering in her battered travel trunk. The woman in her eighties (her bones aching in the humid heat of summer, her step cautious in winter’s frozen treachery) unwinds the past, sends it twisting and spiralling in an unstoppable black flow across the pages. The urgency of the project is insistent: impending foreclosure flays her on, reopening old wounds, forcing her to confront life in all its bewilderment and pain.
This, in the sparest of terms, is the framework of The Blind Assassin, the novel which has won for the Canadian writer, Margaret Atwood, this year’s Booker Prize. Her previous near-winners were The Handmaid’s Tale, Cat’s Eye, and Alias Grace. In her latest book, Atwood explores again a theme central to her fictional universe: what happens to relationships, to human potential, to the possibility of happiness when women are kept subordinate, stultified by their inferior status and locked in silence.
Iris Chase, the woman who unravels her past across the pages of The Blind Assassin, is at first sight an improbable victim of history.
The granddaughter of an entrepreneur who built an empire out of the manufacture of buttons and cheap clothing for the masses, she has lived, for the most part of her life, cocooned from economic hardship. In her narrative, she conjures up the whimsical splendours of Avilion, the evocatively titled domain her grandparents built in celebration of their new wealth and status and the place where she spent her childhood. Reliving her marriage to a young tycoon with political ambitions, she takes us into the sumptuous between-theWars world of the highly moneyed: the fur-draped fashions, the dinner parties, the Atlantic crossings on luxury liners. Such landscapes, replete with nostalgia, have in our own times yielded rich pickings to advertisers and commercial film-makers aware of the power of the past. In Atwood’s case, however, evoking a class experience characterized by profligacy and privilege is not done to beguile us or set the book on course for film rights. Rather, it establishes a polarity between material advantage and emotional poverty, between the possibilities opened up by access to plenty and the reality of futile, empty lives. In a real sense, this is not only a political novel but also a morality tale.
In the book’s opening pages, information is thrown at the reader from a variety of sources: from a narrative we do not yet understand to be Iris’, from newspaper clippings, and from a book written by Laura Chase (Iris’ sister). The last carries immediate poignancy, for we already know Laura to be dead, her car having plunged from a bridge; there is speculation that it was suicide.
This choice of structure allows Atwood to introduce, from the start, a sense of the contentious nature of experience: there is a world of difference between the clipped prose of the pro-establishment local paper and the dead Laura’s unfolding of emotion (her novel is a high-intensity story of unmarried love which generated shock waves following its publication in the late 1940s). The structure also builds in elasticity, enabling the writer not only to throw the past against the present but also to change pace, to intensify and then release, in a way that tightens her hold on our sensibilities, propelling us deeper into the mystery. There is a further dimension to this structure: through it we, the readers, find ourselves repeatedly revising the assumptions we formed at the novel’s beginning. In the manner of a landscape viewed from a moving vantage point, the story shifts, rearranges itself, discloses elements once hidden from view. To specify the changes would be to give away too much of the plot, reducing the novel’s capacity to surprise and challenge. What Atwood is attempting, one senses, is not a bid for authorial cleverness designed to leave the reader stunned and bemused, but rather a journey towards the truth which invites her reader to question, reformulate and reinterpret. Despite its old technology form, this is an interactive novel.
For the reader who accepts the invitation, this is a journey into pain. Atwood wields her pen like the most deadly and delicate of knives, cutting through to the raw edge of emotion, exposing our areas of greatest vulnerability:  our relationships with others. Part of the stiletto sharpness of her writing derives from a use of language that is precise and alive to the sheer potency of words.
Atwood’s use of analogy, too, can bring the reader up short. When Iris’ father, lamed and broken, returns home in his uniform from the First World War, his medals “are like holes shot in the cloth, through which the dull gleam of his real, metal body can be seen”. On board a ship at the start of her honeymoon, Iris watches professional dancers perform a passionless tango accompanied by music that is “… jagged, hobbled — like a four-legged animal lurching on three legs; a crippled bull with its head down, lunging”.
This is also a book rich in tongue-in-cheek humour that at several points had me laughing out loud. In a narrative that has a strong aural quality to it, a pervasive sense of voice play, Atwood makes artful use of the character of Renee, the housekeeper at the ancestral home to whom Iris and Laura, having lost their own mother, turn for maternal attention.
A working class woman with a nononsense outlook on life, Renee offers, through her repertoire of proverbs, sayings and catchphrases, a running commentary on events that both entertains and unsettles. But the primary source of humour is Iris herself: curmudgeonly and difficult in old age, she is possessed of a capacity for wry observation, an ability to lay bare the incongruities of life, with humour jostling the sadness.

(2014)

Q. What does the author mean by ‘the contentious nature of experience’?

Solution:

In the fifth paragraph it is mentioned - "…a sense of the contentious nature of experience: there is a world of difference between the clipped prose of the proestablishment local paper and the dead Laura's unfolding of emotion …"

QUESTION: 4

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Conscious of her approaching death, she has broken at last a lifetime’s practice of concealment, of stashing the truth away in the manner of the papers and mementoes mouldering in her battered travel trunk. The woman in her eighties (her bones aching in the humid heat of summer, her step cautious in winter’s frozen treachery) unwinds the past, sends it twisting and spiralling in an unstoppable black flow across the pages. The urgency of the project is insistent: impending foreclosure flays her on, reopening old wounds, forcing her to confront life in all its bewilderment and pain.
This, in the sparest of terms, is the framework of The Blind Assassin, the novel which has won for the Canadian writer, Margaret Atwood, this year’s Booker Prize. Her previous near-winners were The Handmaid’s Tale, Cat’s Eye, and Alias Grace. In her latest book, Atwood explores again a theme central to her fictional universe: what happens to relationships, to human potential, to the possibility of happiness when women are kept subordinate, stultified by their inferior status and locked in silence.
Iris Chase, the woman who unravels her past across the pages of The Blind Assassin, is at first sight an improbable victim of history.
The granddaughter of an entrepreneur who built an empire out of the manufacture of buttons and cheap clothing for the masses, she has lived, for the most part of her life, cocooned from economic hardship. In her narrative, she conjures up the whimsical splendours of Avilion, the evocatively titled domain her grandparents built in celebration of their new wealth and status and the place where she spent her childhood. Reliving her marriage to a young tycoon with political ambitions, she takes us into the sumptuous between-theWars world of the highly moneyed: the fur-draped fashions, the dinner parties, the Atlantic crossings on luxury liners. Such landscapes, replete with nostalgia, have in our own times yielded rich pickings to advertisers and commercial film-makers aware of the power of the past. In Atwood’s case, however, evoking a class experience characterized by profligacy and privilege is not done to beguile us or set the book on course for film rights. Rather, it establishes a polarity between material advantage and emotional poverty, between the possibilities opened up by access to plenty and the reality of futile, empty lives. In a real sense, this is not only a political novel but also a morality tale.
In the book’s opening pages, information is thrown at the reader from a variety of sources: from a narrative we do not yet understand to be Iris’, from newspaper clippings, and from a book written by Laura Chase (Iris’ sister). The last carries immediate poignancy, for we already know Laura to be dead, her car having plunged from a bridge; there is speculation that it was suicide.
This choice of structure allows Atwood to introduce, from the start, a sense of the contentious nature of experience: there is a world of difference between the clipped prose of the pro-establishment local paper and the dead Laura’s unfolding of emotion (her novel is a high-intensity story of unmarried love which generated shock waves following its publication in the late 1940s). The structure also builds in elasticity, enabling the writer not only to throw the past against the present but also to change pace, to intensify and then release, in a way that tightens her hold on our sensibilities, propelling us deeper into the mystery. There is a further dimension to this structure: through it we, the readers, find ourselves repeatedly revising the assumptions we formed at the novel’s beginning. In the manner of a landscape viewed from a moving vantage point, the story shifts, rearranges itself, discloses elements once hidden from view. To specify the changes would be to give away too much of the plot, reducing the novel’s capacity to surprise and challenge. What Atwood is attempting, one senses, is not a bid for authorial cleverness designed to leave the reader stunned and bemused, but rather a journey towards the truth which invites her reader to question, reformulate and reinterpret. Despite its old technology form, this is an interactive novel.
For the reader who accepts the invitation, this is a journey into pain. Atwood wields her pen like the most deadly and delicate of knives, cutting through to the raw edge of emotion, exposing our areas of greatest vulnerability:  our relationships with others. Part of the stiletto sharpness of her writing derives from a use of language that is precise and alive to the sheer potency of words.
Atwood’s use of analogy, too, can bring the reader up short. When Iris’ father, lamed and broken, returns home in his uniform from the First World War, his medals “are like holes shot in the cloth, through which the dull gleam of his real, metal body can be seen”. On board a ship at the start of her honeymoon, Iris watches professional dancers perform a passionless tango accompanied by music that is “… jagged, hobbled — like a four-legged animal lurching on three legs; a crippled bull with its head down, lunging”.
This is also a book rich in tongue-in-cheek humour that at several points had me laughing out loud. In a narrative that has a strong aural quality to it, a pervasive sense of voice play, Atwood makes artful use of the character of Renee, the housekeeper at the ancestral home to whom Iris and Laura, having lost their own mother, turn for maternal attention.
A working class woman with a nononsense outlook on life, Renee offers, through her repertoire of proverbs, sayings and catchphrases, a running commentary on events that both entertains and unsettles. But the primary source of humour is Iris herself: curmudgeonly and difficult in old age, she is possessed of a capacity for wry observation, an ability to lay bare the incongruities of life, with humour jostling the sadness.

(2014)

Q. Identify the central theme of Atwood’s novel.

Solution:

The second paragraph states - "In her latest book Atwood explores again a theme central to her fictional universe: what happens to relationships, to human potential, to the possibility of happiness when women are kept subordinate, stultified by their inferior status and locked in silence".

QUESTION: 5

Directions for Questions: The poem given below is followed by a set of questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE 

I would not exchange the sorrows of my heart For the joys of the multitude.
And I would not have the tears that sadness makes To flow from my every part turn into laughter.
I would that my life remain a tear and a smile.
A tear to purify my heart and give me understanding Of life’s secrets and hidden things.
A smile to draw me nigh to the sons of my kind and To be a symbol of my glorification of the gods.
A tear to unite me with those of broken heart; A smile to be a sign of my joy in existence.
I would rather that I died in yearning and longing than that I live Weary and despairing.
I want the hunger for love and beauty to be in the Depths of my spirit, for I have seen those who are Satisfied the most wretched of people.
I have heard the sigh of those in yearning and Longing, and it is sweeter than the sweetest melody.
With evening’s coming the flower folds her petals And sleeps, embracing her longing.
At morning’s approach she opens her lips to meet The sun’s kiss.
The life of a flower is longing and fulfilment.
A tear and a smile.
The waters of the sea become vapour and rise and come Together and area cloud.
And the cloud floats above the hills and valleys Until it meets the gentle breeze, then falls weeping To the fields and joins with brooks and rivers to Return to the sea, its home.
The life of clouds is a parting and a meeting.
A tear and a smile.
And so does the spirit become separated from The greater spirit to move in the world of matter And pass as a cloud over the mountain of sorrow And the plains of joy to meet the breeze of death And return whence it came.
To the ocean of Love and Beauty——to God.

(2013)

Q. Which of the following options best reflects the theme of the poem?

Solution:

Option (a) is incorrect because the poet mentions those in yearning and longing; he does not refer to the poor here. Option (b) should also be excluded because theme of the poem is the importance of 'tears and smiles' and not the development of the needy. Option (c) is incorrect because it does establish the fact that both joys and sorrows play a role in inspiring people. The poet also feels that tears purify heart while smiles bring one closer to the gods. The theme of the poem is appropriately summarized by option (d), so it is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 6

Directions for Questions: The poem given below is followed by a set of questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE 

I would not exchange the sorrows of my heart For the joys of the multitude.
And I would not have the tears that sadness makes To flow from my every part turn into laughter.
I would that my life remain a tear and a smile.
A tear to purify my heart and give me understanding Of life’s secrets and hidden things.
A smile to draw me nigh to the sons of my kind and To be a symbol of my glorification of the gods.
A tear to unite me with those of broken heart; A smile to be a sign of my joy in existence.
I would rather that I died in yearning and longing than that I live Weary and despairing.
I want the hunger for love and beauty to be in the Depths of my spirit, for I have seen those who are Satisfied the most wretched of people.
I have heard the sigh of those in yearning and Longing, and it is sweeter than the sweetest melody.
With evening’s coming the flower folds her petals And sleeps, embracing her longing.
At morning’s approach she opens her lips to meet The sun’s kiss.
The life of a flower is longing and fulfilment.
A tear and a smile.
The waters of the sea become vapour and rise and come Together and area cloud.
And the cloud floats above the hills and valleys Until it meets the gentle breeze, then falls weeping To the fields and joins with brooks and rivers to Return to the sea, its home.
The life of clouds is a parting and a meeting.
A tear and a smile.
And so does the spirit become separated from The greater spirit to move in the world of matter And pass as a cloud over the mountain of sorrow And the plains of joy to meet the breeze of death And return whence it came.
To the ocean of Love and Beauty——to God.

(2013)

Q. Which of the following options best explains why the poet feels that those who are Satisfied are the most wretched?

Solution:

Option (a) is not correct as it focuses on the manner in which people achieve satisfaction; but the means to achieve it is neither stated nor implied in the poem.
Option (b) is incorrect because the ability to understand the secrets of life has been linked with the challenges. The poem does not provide any information on that. Option (d) is incorrect because it assumes something which is not mentioned in the poem. It is nowhere mentioned in the poem that unsatisfied persons are happy and their happiness will be lost once they are satisfied. Option (c) best explains poet's feelings about satisfied people. The poet feels that it is better to live a life in which one constantly yearns for fulfillment. The poet also indicates that a person who is satisfied cannot experience the joys that yearning and longing bring with them. So option (c) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 7

Directions for Questions: The poem given below is followed by a set of questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE 

I would not exchange the sorrows of my heart For the joys of the multitude.
And I would not have the tears that sadness makes To flow from my every part turn into laughter.
I would that my life remain a tear and a smile.
A tear to purify my heart and give me understanding Of life’s secrets and hidden things.
A smile to draw me nigh to the sons of my kind and To be a symbol of my glorification of the gods.
A tear to unite me with those of broken heart; A smile to be a sign of my joy in existence.
I would rather that I died in yearning and longing than that I live Weary and despairing.
I want the hunger for love and beauty to be in the Depths of my spirit, for I have seen those who are Satisfied the most wretched of people.
I have heard the sigh of those in yearning and Longing, and it is sweeter than the sweetest melody.
With evening’s coming the flower folds her petals And sleeps, embracing her longing.
At morning’s approach she opens her lips to meet The sun’s kiss.
The life of a flower is longing and fulfilment.
A tear and a smile.
The waters of the sea become vapour and rise and come Together and area cloud.
And the cloud floats above the hills and valleys Until it meets the gentle breeze, then falls weeping To the fields and joins with brooks and rivers to Return to the sea, its home.
The life of clouds is a parting and a meeting.
A tear and a smile.
And so does the spirit become separated from The greater spirit to move in the world of matter And pass as a cloud over the mountain of sorrow And the plains of joy to meet the breeze of death And return whence it came.
To the ocean of Love and Beauty——to God.

(2013)

Q. Which of the following does the author attempt to signify while stating the example of the clouds?

Solution:

Option (a) is incorrect because cycle of give and take suggests 'exchange' whereas the poet talks about parting, meeting and returning to one's origins. Option (c) is incorrect because it is not implied in the poem that there is obvious explanation for the formation of cloud. Option (d) is also incorrect because no line of distinction has been drawn in the poem between spiritual and worldly phenomenon. Option (b) presents an accurate explanation. Lines 24-32 of the poem clearly mention that similar to clouds one eventually returns to one's origins. So option (b) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 8

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE 

Scheibitz’s paintings are often difficult to read, though most contain human presences, and many are titled as if they are portraits: Portrait Tracy Berglund; Henry Stand; Ret Marut. The names sound as invented as the shapes that make and unmake the figures in the paintings. Look long enough and Tracy Berglund appears to resolve into a female figure in a long skirt and grey jacket, holding a slice of watermelon. Or it could be cheese. Or a megaphone.
Everything looks deliberate and calculated, but at some point things stop making sense – or rather, start making a kind of sense that is all Scheibitz’s own. Flat planes drift into emptiness; distracted brushstrokes wander away like someone getting lost on a walk.
Perspectives warp, geometries fall apart. The spaces between things become more insistent than the things themselves. These are very unreasonable paintings.
That’s part of the pleasure. Scheibitz’s work has been called “conceptual painting”. I have always thought painting is a conceptual as well as a physical activity. Using fragments of graphic symbols, compound forms and motifs whose origins are often impossible to trace, the artist arrives at a kind of figuration that is at odds with itself. “I can’t invent anything and I can’t use what I find as it is,” he recently told one interviewer. He also told me, as we looked around his show, that everything connects to everything else.
Part of Scheibitz’s collection of source materials is laid out on tables at Baltic – not that they’re much help. Here is a gift pack of multicoloured Harrods golf tees, then two patterned cigarette lighters, some dice, a walnut and several stones with naturally occurring right angles. How odd. And now, he has painted various objects yellow: a plaster tortoise, a paintbrush stiff with pigment, a toy car.
Among all these things, traces of the shapes and contours in his paintings might be found, like lines of a song or a bit of a tune that goes round your head. There are dozens of these objects. How they are translated into elements in his paintings is anybody’s guess.
The overall impression is that nothing is random. There are affinities here. Scheibitz has a good eye for an ambiguous but characterful shape. One “portrait”, called John Held, is painted on a small, asymmetrically carved gravestone that sits on a plinth. It looks a bit like a face but has no features.

(2013)

Q. Which of the following options best explains why the author terms Scheibitz’s paintings as unreasonable?

Solution:

Option (a) is incorrect as it fails to present a complete perspective. Option (b) is also incorrect as it seems incomplete and cannot be inferred from the passage.
Option (d) is also excluded as it cannot be deducted from the information provided in the passage. It is not mentioned that one must understand art and its related philosophy in order to understand Scheibitz's paintings. Option (c) appropriately sums up ideas contained in the passage. In the second paragraph Scheibitz's paintings have been told as unreasonable.
The first paragraph establishes the fact that the paintings are not what they seem at first or even second glance. The second paragraph indicates that the onlooker needs to understand the paintings not from their individual perspectives but from the artist's perspective. So option (c) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 9

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE 

Scheibitz’s paintings are often difficult to read, though most contain human presences, and many are titled as if they are portraits: Portrait Tracy Berglund; Henry Stand; Ret Marut. The names sound as invented as the shapes that make and unmake the figures in the paintings. Look long enough and Tracy Berglund appears to resolve into a female figure in a long skirt and grey jacket, holding a slice of watermelon. Or it could be cheese. Or a megaphone.
Everything looks deliberate and calculated, but at some point things stop making sense – or rather, start making a kind of sense that is all Scheibitz’s own. Flat planes drift into emptiness; distracted brushstrokes wander away like someone getting lost on a walk.
Perspectives warp, geometries fall apart. The spaces between things become more insistent than the things themselves. These are very unreasonable paintings.
That’s part of the pleasure. Scheibitz’s work has been called “conceptual painting”. I have always thought painting is a conceptual as well as a physical activity. Using fragments of graphic symbols, compound forms and motifs whose origins are often impossible to trace, the artist arrives at a kind of figuration that is at odds with itself. “I can’t invent anything and I can’t use what I find as it is,” he recently told one interviewer. He also told me, as we looked around his show, that everything connects to everything else.
Part of Scheibitz’s collection of source materials is laid out on tables at Baltic – not that they’re much help. Here is a gift pack of multicoloured Harrods golf tees, then two patterned cigarette lighters, some dice, a walnut and several stones with naturally occurring right angles. How odd. And now, he has painted various objects yellow: a plaster tortoise, a paintbrush stiff with pigment, a toy car.
Among all these things, traces of the shapes and contours in his paintings might be found, like lines of a song or a bit of a tune that goes round your head. There are dozens of these objects. How they are translated into elements in his paintings is anybody’s guess.
The overall impression is that nothing is random. There are affinities here. Scheibitz has a good eye for an ambiguous but characterful shape. One “portrait”, called John Held, is painted on a small, asymmetrically carved gravestone that sits on a plinth. It looks a bit like a face but has no features.

(2013)

Q. Which of the following options can be inferred from the given passage?

Solution:

Option (a) is incorrect because it cannot be inferred that the artist intentionally creates art that is difficult to fathom and place. The last sentence of this paragraph suggests that in the artist's mind, everything in his paintings is interconnected with real life. Option (b) is also incorrect because it cannot be inferred from the passage that Scheibitz's paintings are hard to categorize. Option (d) is incorrect as it presents only the philosophical perspective which is not the main idea of the passage. Option (c) can be inferred from the last sentence of the third paragraph and the entire fourth paragraph, so it is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 10

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE 

Scheibitz’s paintings are often difficult to read, though most contain human presences, and many are titled as if they are portraits: Portrait Tracy Berglund; Henry Stand; Ret Marut. The names sound as invented as the shapes that make and unmake the figures in the paintings. Look long enough and Tracy Berglund appears to resolve into a female figure in a long skirt and grey jacket, holding a slice of watermelon. Or it could be cheese. Or a megaphone.
Everything looks deliberate and calculated, but at some point things stop making sense – or rather, start making a kind of sense that is all Scheibitz’s own. Flat planes drift into emptiness; distracted brushstrokes wander away like someone getting lost on a walk.
Perspectives warp, geometries fall apart. The spaces between things become more insistent than the things themselves. These are very unreasonable paintings.
That’s part of the pleasure. Scheibitz’s work has been called “conceptual painting”. I have always thought painting is a conceptual as well as a physical activity. Using fragments of graphic symbols, compound forms and motifs whose origins are often impossible to trace, the artist arrives at a kind of figuration that is at odds with itself. “I can’t invent anything and I can’t use what I find as it is,” he recently told one interviewer. He also told me, as we looked around his show, that everything connects to everything else.
Part of Scheibitz’s collection of source materials is laid out on tables at Baltic – not that they’re much help. Here is a gift pack of multicoloured Harrods golf tees, then two patterned cigarette lighters, some dice, a walnut and several stones with naturally occurring right angles. How odd. And now, he has painted various objects yellow: a plaster tortoise, a paintbrush stiff with pigment, a toy car.
Among all these things, traces of the shapes and contours in his paintings might be found, like lines of a song or a bit of a tune that goes round your head. There are dozens of these objects. How they are translated into elements in his paintings is anybody’s guess.
The overall impression is that nothing is random. There are affinities here. Scheibitz has a good eye for an ambiguous but characterful shape. One “portrait”, called John Held, is painted on a small, asymmetrically carved gravestone that sits on a plinth. It looks a bit like a face but has no features.

(2013)

Q. Which of the following options best presents the significance of the penultimate paragraph?

Solution:

Option (a) is incorrect because it makes a general statement which cannot be inferred from the fourth paragraph of the passage. The paragraph indicates that the source materials are interconnected which necessarily may not be the source of artist's inspiration.
Option (b) is incorrect because it contradicts the last sentence of the third paragraph. Option (d) is also incorrect as it talks about the author's assertion. The assertion mentioned in the paragraph is that of the painter. Option (c) appropriately paraphrases the fourth paragraph, so it is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 11

Directions for Questions: Read the passage given below and choose the best answers for the questions that follow.
PASSAGE

On the first page of the novel I am writing, I describe a horse — a gray mare named Mathilde. The mare is not a principal character in my novel; on page 23, when she briefly reappears in the hold of a ship crossing the Atlantic Ocean on her way to South America, I may, in the confusion of a stormy passage, easily forget about her and call her a pony; worse still, on page 84 where Mathilde is galloping on the plains of the Gran Chaco in Paraguay, I could have her become a filly. My point is that there is a huge difference between a mare, a pony and a filly. My Mathilde is long-legged, elegant, reliable, whereas a pony is tricky, often mean and tends to nip, and a filly is skittish, untrained, ready to bolt and do who knows what.
Misspellings and inaccurate quotations and/or inaccurately rendered foreign phrases (and the writer herself is often the one to notice these most) stop the reader cold on the page. The same is true of typos.
Writing consistently goes beyond getting the facts right. “If it is one, say one,” says a Chinese proverb (and not eighteen minus seventeen nor five-sixths plus one-sixth). This is not, I think, a question of keeping it simple but of making it as true as possible. Not an easy task: At every turn, the sentence invites me to show how much I know, to show how smart I think I am; every metaphor, every analogy has the potential for fraudulence. Adverbs are hills I must climb to get to my destination; adjectives are furniture blocking my way. English is a naming language; its power derives from nouns. “Art,” Ken Kesey said, “is a lie in the service of truth,” a statement which may appear to be contradictory but is not. Interesting, too, how often a true story sounds both false and boring while a lie sounds quite plausible.; the truth is right there in front of your nose. A lie is more trouble. As the liar/writer, I have to convince. I have to appear sincere and be twice as clever so as not to get caught. One way of doing this is to use a lot of details, to distract the reader: “Making things up — as in fiction — sounds easy and like fun and it may be  at first. By page three, to say nothing of by chapter five or six, I guarantee, it becomes harder and harder to sustain that lie or whatever the story is that you have made up. Harder still to continue to sustain the belief of your reader as well as to convince him of the worth of your endeavor; hardest of all for him to trust you with it.
In my case, some of my writing is based on my experience. And if I’m successful, in the end, I won’t be able to remember — like a good liar, I suppose — what is true and what is made up. Or I like to write about stuff the average reader may not know a whole lot about: Sufis, Thai culinary customs, Guarani lace-making. Or I do a lot of research and then try my damndest to hide it all — another form of deceit — because every fact, every date, every statistic (however accurate and consistent) in fiction is like a stone hurled into the hull of a boat and with each stone the boat sinks further in the water.

(2012)

Q. It can be inferred that the author talks about the mistakes with the horse, filly and mare in order to

Solution:

In this passage the author talks about mistakes which are made during writing a book. In the first paragraph, the author points out the mistake of referring to a character (Mathilde) of the novel differently (as horse, mare or filly) at different places. The author also points out other mistakes such as misspellings, inaccurate quotations, wrong use of metaphors, adverbs and adjectives, and inappropriate analogies. It is clear that the author intends to highlight points that should be taken care of while writing a book.

QUESTION: 12

Directions for Questions: Read the passage given below and choose the best answers for the questions that follow.
PASSAGE

On the first page of the novel I am writing, I describe a horse — a gray mare named Mathilde. The mare is not a principal character in my novel; on page 23, when she briefly reappears in the hold of a ship crossing the Atlantic Ocean on her way to South America, I may, in the confusion of a stormy passage, easily forget about her and call her a pony; worse still, on page 84 where Mathilde is galloping on the plains of the Gran Chaco in Paraguay, I could have her become a filly. My point is that there is a huge difference between a mare, a pony and a filly. My Mathilde is long-legged, elegant, reliable, whereas a pony is tricky, often mean and tends to nip, and a filly is skittish, untrained, ready to bolt and do who knows what.
Misspellings and inaccurate quotations and/or inaccurately rendered foreign phrases (and the writer herself is often the one to notice these most) stop the reader cold on the page. The same is true of typos.
Writing consistently goes beyond getting the facts right. “If it is one, say one,” says a Chinese proverb (and not eighteen minus seventeen nor five-sixths plus one-sixth). This is not, I think, a question of keeping it simple but of making it as true as possible. Not an easy task: At every turn, the sentence invites me to show how much I know, to show how smart I think I am; every metaphor, every analogy has the potential for fraudulence. Adverbs are hills I must climb to get to my destination; adjectives are furniture blocking my way. English is a naming language; its power derives from nouns. “Art,” Ken Kesey said, “is a lie in the service of truth,” a statement which may appear to be contradictory but is not. Interesting, too, how often a true story sounds both false and boring while a lie sounds quite plausible.; the truth is right there in front of your nose. A lie is more trouble. As the liar/writer, I have to convince. I have to appear sincere and be twice as clever so as not to get caught. One way of doing this is to use a lot of details, to distract the reader: “Making things up — as in fiction — sounds easy and like fun and it may be  at first. By page three, to say nothing of by chapter five or six, I guarantee, it becomes harder and harder to sustain that lie or whatever the story is that you have made up. Harder still to continue to sustain the belief of your reader as well as to convince him of the worth of your endeavor; hardest of all for him to trust you with it.
In my case, some of my writing is based on my experience. And if I’m successful, in the end, I won’t be able to remember — like a good liar, I suppose — what is true and what is made up. Or I like to write about stuff the average reader may not know a whole lot about: Sufis, Thai culinary customs, Guarani lace-making. Or I do a lot of research and then try my damndest to hide it all — another form of deceit — because every fact, every date, every statistic (however accurate and consistent) in fiction is like a stone hurled into the hull of a boat and with each stone the boat sinks further in the water.

(2012)

Q. What does the author mean by saying “English is a naming language”?

Solution:

Options (a) and (c) are wrong because name-calling is a negative term which is different from naming. Option
(d) is mentioned nowhere in the passage, so it is wrong.
In the third paragraph of the passage, the last sentence talks about power of English language which derives from nouns. So option (b) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 13

Directions for Questions: Read the passage given below and choose the best answers for the questions that follow.
PASSAGE

On the first page of the novel I am writing, I describe a horse — a gray mare named Mathilde. The mare is not a principal character in my novel; on page 23, when she briefly reappears in the hold of a ship crossing the Atlantic Ocean on her way to South America, I may, in the confusion of a stormy passage, easily forget about her and call her a pony; worse still, on page 84 where Mathilde is galloping on the plains of the Gran Chaco in Paraguay, I could have her become a filly. My point is that there is a huge difference between a mare, a pony and a filly. My Mathilde is long-legged, elegant, reliable, whereas a pony is tricky, often mean and tends to nip, and a filly is skittish, untrained, ready to bolt and do who knows what.
Misspellings and inaccurate quotations and/or inaccurately rendered foreign phrases (and the writer herself is often the one to notice these most) stop the reader cold on the page. The same is true of typos.
Writing consistently goes beyond getting the facts right. “If it is one, say one,” says a Chinese proverb (and not eighteen minus seventeen nor five-sixths plus one-sixth). This is not, I think, a question of keeping it simple but of making it as true as possible. Not an easy task: At every turn, the sentence invites me to show how much I know, to show how smart I think I am; every metaphor, every analogy has the potential for fraudulence. Adverbs are hills I must climb to get to my destination; adjectives are furniture blocking my way. English is a naming language; its power derives from nouns. “Art,” Ken Kesey said, “is a lie in the service of truth,” a statement which may appear to be contradictory but is not. Interesting, too, how often a true story sounds both false and boring while a lie sounds quite plausible.; the truth is right there in front of your nose. A lie is more trouble. As the liar/writer, I have to convince. I have to appear sincere and be twice as clever so as not to get caught. One way of doing this is to use a lot of details, to distract the reader: “Making things up — as in fiction — sounds easy and like fun and it may be  at first. By page three, to say nothing of by chapter five or six, I guarantee, it becomes harder and harder to sustain that lie or whatever the story is that you have made up. Harder still to continue to sustain the belief of your reader as well as to convince him of the worth of your endeavor; hardest of all for him to trust you with it.
In my case, some of my writing is based on my experience. And if I’m successful, in the end, I won’t be able to remember — like a good liar, I suppose — what is true and what is made up. Or I like to write about stuff the average reader may not know a whole lot about: Sufis, Thai culinary customs, Guarani lace-making. Or I do a lot of research and then try my damndest to hide it all — another form of deceit — because every fact, every date, every statistic (however accurate and consistent) in fiction is like a stone hurled into the hull of a boat and with each stone the boat sinks further in the water.

(2012)

Q. What is the author trying to convey by using the imagery of throwing stones into a boat, which sinks further to talk about fiction?

Solution:

The imagery of throwing stones into a boat is used by author in the concluding sentence of the last paragraph of the passage. With the help of this imagery, the author points out deliberate efforts to hide a lie under the pile of accurate facts, figures or statistics. These unnecessary details make it difficult to sustain accuracy in the story. So option (a) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 14

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

The development underlines the great danger we face from the extension of anti-terrorist measures and methods into normal life – the policing of our streets, for example, and the hounding of football fans and climate change protestors.
Just as disturbing is the line of questioning by the police of those who made freedom of information requests before the alleged hacking of computers last year. In a letter to the Financial Times, Sebastian Nokes, a climate change sceptic and businessman, said he was interviewed by an officer who “wanted to know what computer I used, my internet service provider, and also to which political parties I have belonged, what I feel about climate change and what my qualifications in climate science are. He questioned me at length about my political and scientific opinions”.
The police have a duty to investigate the alleged crime, but this kind of questioning smacks of something far more sinister because a person’s political and scientific views are being weighed to assess his likely criminality in the eyes of the police officer.
Now you might ask how else the police are going to establish who is a suspect. After all, you would certainly ask people about their views if you investigating a string of racist attacks. But this is not a violent crime or a terrorist matter: moreover, Nokes had simply sent “an FOI request to the university’s climate unit asking whether scientists had received training in the disclosure rules and asking for copies of any emails in which they suggested ducking their obligations to disclose data”.
On that basis the police felt entitled to examine Nokes on his views. These days it’s surprising that they haven’t found a way to seize his computer and mobile phone, which is what routinely happens to those involved in climate change protests. Limits need to be set in the policing and investigation of people’s legitimate beliefs. Any future government must take a grip on the tendency of the police to watch, search, categorise and retain the personal details of those who express the political, religious or scientific beliefs. We should never forget that under this government the police have used forward intelligence teams to photograph people emerging from a climate change meeting in a cafe in Brighton; have used the ANPR system to track the movement of vehicles belonging to people travelling to demonstrations; have prevented press photographers from carrying out their lawful right to cover news events; and have combed the computers and searched the premises of an MP legitimately engaged in the business of opposition and holding the government to account.
What this adds up to is a failure of understanding in the police force that one of its primary duties is to protect the various and sometimes inconvenient manifestations of a democracy, not to suppress them. That is why they have to be ultra-careful deploying specialist terrorist intelligence units and treating people’s opinions as evidence.

(2010)

Q. Which one of these best expresses the author ’s attitude towards Sebastian Nokes?

Solution:
QUESTION: 15

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

The development underlines the great danger we face from the extension of anti-terrorist measures and methods into normal life – the policing of our streets, for example, and the hounding of football fans and climate change protestors.
Just as disturbing is the line of questioning by the police of those who made freedom of information requests before the alleged hacking of computers last year. In a letter to the Financial Times, Sebastian Nokes, a climate change sceptic and businessman, said he was interviewed by an officer who “wanted to know what computer I used, my internet service provider, and also to which political parties I have belonged, what I feel about climate change and what my qualifications in climate science are. He questioned me at length about my political and scientific opinions”.
The police have a duty to investigate the alleged crime, but this kind of questioning smacks of something far more sinister because a person’s political and scientific views are being weighed to assess his likely criminality in the eyes of the police officer.
Now you might ask how else the police are going to establish who is a suspect. After all, you would certainly ask people about their views if you investigating a string of racist attacks. But this is not a violent crime or a terrorist matter: moreover, Nokes had simply sent “an FOI request to the university’s climate unit asking whether scientists had received training in the disclosure rules and asking for copies of any emails in which they suggested ducking their obligations to disclose data”.
On that basis the police felt entitled to examine Nokes on his views. These days it’s surprising that they haven’t found a way to seize his computer and mobile phone, which is what routinely happens to those involved in climate change protests. Limits need to be set in the policing and investigation of people’s legitimate beliefs. Any future government must take a grip on the tendency of the police to watch, search, categorise and retain the personal details of those who express the political, religious or scientific beliefs. We should never forget that under this government the police have used forward intelligence teams to photograph people emerging from a climate change meeting in a cafe in Brighton; have used the ANPR system to track the movement of vehicles belonging to people travelling to demonstrations; have prevented press photographers from carrying out their lawful right to cover news events; and have combed the computers and searched the premises of an MP legitimately engaged in the business of opposition and holding the government to account.
What this adds up to is a failure of understanding in the police force that one of its primary duties is to protect the various and sometimes inconvenient manifestations of a democracy, not to suppress them. That is why they have to be ultra-careful deploying specialist terrorist intelligence units and treating people’s opinions as evidence.

(2010)

Q. What is the central theme explored by the author in the passage?

Solution:

The author is fundamentally concerned with the idea that special powers, which are supposed to be exercised only in extreme cases, are being used where they are not warranted.

QUESTION: 16

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

The development underlines the great danger we face from the extension of anti-terrorist measures and methods into normal life – the policing of our streets, for example, and the hounding of football fans and climate change protestors.
Just as disturbing is the line of questioning by the police of those who made freedom of information requests before the alleged hacking of computers last year. In a letter to the Financial Times, Sebastian Nokes, a climate change sceptic and businessman, said he was interviewed by an officer who “wanted to know what computer I used, my internet service provider, and also to which political parties I have belonged, what I feel about climate change and what my qualifications in climate science are. He questioned me at length about my political and scientific opinions”.
The police have a duty to investigate the alleged crime, but this kind of questioning smacks of something far more sinister because a person’s political and scientific views are being weighed to assess his likely criminality in the eyes of the police officer.
Now you might ask how else the police are going to establish who is a suspect. After all, you would certainly ask people about their views if you investigating a string of racist attacks. But this is not a violent crime or a terrorist matter: moreover, Nokes had simply sent “an FOI request to the university’s climate unit asking whether scientists had received training in the disclosure rules and asking for copies of any emails in which they suggested ducking their obligations to disclose data”.
On that basis the police felt entitled to examine Nokes on his views. These days it’s surprising that they haven’t found a way to seize his computer and mobile phone, which is what routinely happens to those involved in climate change protests. Limits need to be set in the policing and investigation of people’s legitimate beliefs. Any future government must take a grip on the tendency of the police to watch, search, categorise and retain the personal details of those who express the political, religious or scientific beliefs. We should never forget that under this government the police have used forward intelligence teams to photograph people emerging from a climate change meeting in a cafe in Brighton; have used the ANPR system to track the movement of vehicles belonging to people travelling to demonstrations; have prevented press photographers from carrying out their lawful right to cover news events; and have combed the computers and searched the premises of an MP legitimately engaged in the business of opposition and holding the government to account.
What this adds up to is a failure of understanding in the police force that one of its primary duties is to protect the various and sometimes inconvenient manifestations of a democracy, not to suppress them. That is why they have to be ultra-careful deploying specialist terrorist intelligence units and treating people’s opinions as evidence.

(2010)

Q. The author is least likely to support which of the following?

Solution:

In all the other instances a crime has been committed and therefore the police is justified in carrying out various tasks to nab the person or convict him or her.
However, option (d) is not something that the author would support. In the passage it is mentioned that ‘one of its primary duties is to protect the various and sometimes inconvenient manifestations of a democracy, not to suppress them.

QUESTION: 17

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

The idea of dead scientists engaging in an experiment in eugenics is incredible enough. Yet the most striking feature in this episode is the power that is ascribed to science itself. While spiritualism evolved into a popular religion, complete with a heavenly “Summerland” where the dead lived free from care and sorrow, the intellectual elite of psychical researchers thought of their quest as a rigorously scientific inquiry. But if these Victorian seekers turned to science, it was to look for an exit from the world that science had revealed. Darwinism had disclosed a purposeless universe without human meaning; but purpose and meaning could be restored, if only science could show that the human mind carried on evolving after the death of the body. All of these seekers had abandoned any belief in traditional religion. Still, the human need for a meaning in life that religion once satisfied could not be denied, and fuelled the faith that scientific investigation would show that the human story continues after death. In effect, science was used against science, and became a channel for belief in magic.
Much of what the psychical researchers viewed as science we would now call pseudo-science. But the boundaries of scientific knowledge are smudged and shifting, and seem clear only in hindsight. There is no pristine science untouched by the vagaries of faith.
The psychical researchers used science not only to deal with private anguish but also to bolster their weakening belief in progress.
Especially after the catastrophe of the First World War, the gradual improvement that most people expected would continue indefinitely appeared to be faltering. If the scripts were to be believed, however, there was no cause for anxiety or despair.  The  world  might  be sliding  into  anarchy,  but  progress  continued  on  the  other  side. Many of the psychical researchers believed they were doing no more than show that evolution continues in a post-mortem world. Like many others, then and now, they confused two wholly different things. Progress assumes some goal or direction. But evolution has neither of these attributes, and if natural selection continued in another world it would feature the same random death and wasted lives we find here below.
Darwinism is impossible to reconcile with the notion that humans have any special exemption from mortality. In Darwin’s scheme of things species are not fixed or everlasting. How then could only humans go on to a life beyond the grave?  Surely, in terms of the prospect of immortality, all sentient beings stand or fall together. Then again, how could anyone imagine all the legions of the dead – not only the human generations that have come and gone but the countless animal species that are now extinct – living on in the ether, forever?
Science could not give these seekers what they were looking for. Yet at the same time that sections of the English elite were looking for a scientific version of immortality, a similar quest was under way in Russia among the “God-builders” – a section of the Bolshevik intelligentsia that believed science could someday, perhaps quite soon, be used to defeat death.

(2010)

Q. How was “science used against science” according to the author?

Solution:

The author states that the most striking feature of this discussion was the power ascribed to science. Science and Darwin’s theory of evolution had revealed a world that looked meaningless and in order to satisfy the human need of ‘meaning in life’, the researchers were now trying to use science to confirm the existence of life after death. The author says that science became a channel for belief in magic (life after death) and this is how science was used against science. This means that science was used to propagate the believe in life after death.

QUESTION: 18

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

The idea of dead scientists engaging in an experiment in eugenics is incredible enough. Yet the most striking feature in this episode is the power that is ascribed to science itself. While spiritualism evolved into a popular religion, complete with a heavenly “Summerland” where the dead lived free from care and sorrow, the intellectual elite of psychical researchers thought of their quest as a rigorously scientific inquiry. But if these Victorian seekers turned to science, it was to look for an exit from the world that science had revealed. Darwinism had disclosed a purposeless universe without human meaning; but purpose and meaning could be restored, if only science could show that the human mind carried on evolving after the death of the body. All of these seekers had abandoned any belief in traditional religion. Still, the human need for a meaning in life that religion once satisfied could not be denied, and fuelled the faith that scientific investigation would show that the human story continues after death. In effect, science was used against science, and became a channel for belief in magic.
Much of what the psychical researchers viewed as science we would now call pseudo-science. But the boundaries of scientific knowledge are smudged and shifting, and seem clear only in hindsight. There is no pristine science untouched by the vagaries of faith.
The psychical researchers used science not only to deal with private anguish but also to bolster their weakening belief in progress.
Especially after the catastrophe of the First World War, the gradual improvement that most people expected would continue indefinitely appeared to be faltering. If the scripts were to be believed, however, there was no cause for anxiety or despair.  The  world  might  be sliding  into  anarchy,  but  progress  continued  on  the  other  side. Many of the psychical researchers believed they were doing no more than show that evolution continues in a post-mortem world. Like many others, then and now, they confused two wholly different things. Progress assumes some goal or direction. But evolution has neither of these attributes, and if natural selection continued in another world it would feature the same random death and wasted lives we find here below.
Darwinism is impossible to reconcile with the notion that humans have any special exemption from mortality. In Darwin’s scheme of things species are not fixed or everlasting. How then could only humans go on to a life beyond the grave?  Surely, in terms of the prospect of immortality, all sentient beings stand or fall together. Then again, how could anyone imagine all the legions of the dead – not only the human generations that have come and gone but the countless animal species that are now extinct – living on in the ether, forever?
Science could not give these seekers what they were looking for. Yet at the same time that sections of the English elite were looking for a scientific version of immortality, a similar quest was under way in Russia among the “God-builders” – a section of the Bolshevik intelligentsia that believed science could someday, perhaps quite soon, be used to defeat death.

(2010)

Q. What is the confusion of past and present day psychical researchers?

Solution:
QUESTION: 19

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

The idea of dead scientists engaging in an experiment in eugenics is incredible enough. Yet the most striking feature in this episode is the power that is ascribed to science itself. While spiritualism evolved into a popular religion, complete with a heavenly “Summerland” where the dead lived free from care and sorrow, the intellectual elite of psychical researchers thought of their quest as a rigorously scientific inquiry. But if these Victorian seekers turned to science, it was to look for an exit from the world that science had revealed. Darwinism had disclosed a purposeless universe without human meaning; but purpose and meaning could be restored, if only science could show that the human mind carried on evolving after the death of the body. All of these seekers had abandoned any belief in traditional religion. Still, the human need for a meaning in life that religion once satisfied could not be denied, and fuelled the faith that scientific investigation would show that the human story continues after death. In effect, science was used against science, and became a channel for belief in magic.
Much of what the psychical researchers viewed as science we would now call pseudo-science. But the boundaries of scientific knowledge are smudged and shifting, and seem clear only in hindsight. There is no pristine science untouched by the vagaries of faith.
The psychical researchers used science not only to deal with private anguish but also to bolster their weakening belief in progress.
Especially after the catastrophe of the First World War, the gradual improvement that most people expected would continue indefinitely appeared to be faltering. If the scripts were to be believed, however, there was no cause for anxiety or despair.  The  world  might  be sliding  into  anarchy,  but  progress  continued  on  the  other  side. Many of the psychical researchers believed they were doing no more than show that evolution continues in a post-mortem world. Like many others, then and now, they confused two wholly different things. Progress assumes some goal or direction. But evolution has neither of these attributes, and if natural selection continued in another world it would feature the same random death and wasted lives we find here below.
Darwinism is impossible to reconcile with the notion that humans have any special exemption from mortality. In Darwin’s scheme of things species are not fixed or everlasting. How then could only humans go on to a life beyond the grave?  Surely, in terms of the prospect of immortality, all sentient beings stand or fall together. Then again, how could anyone imagine all the legions of the dead – not only the human generations that have come and gone but the countless animal species that are now extinct – living on in the ether, forever?
Science could not give these seekers what they were looking for. Yet at the same time that sections of the English elite were looking for a scientific version of immortality, a similar quest was under way in Russia among the “God-builders” – a section of the Bolshevik intelligentsia that believed science could someday, perhaps quite soon, be used to defeat death.

(2010)

Q. Which of the following is the most appropriate title for the passage?

Solution:

Throughout the passage the author has argued how scientists attempted to find ways in which they could demonstrate that human lives had a purpose and meaning that continued after death. Option (c) comes closest to capturing the essence of the passage.

QUESTION: 20

Directions for Questions: The passage given below is followed by a set of four questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.
PASSAGE

In a stadium in Prague, 20 years ago today, a hundred thousand people, including my father and me, saw something we were not supposed to see. For decades it had been forbidden. The music, we were told, would poison our minds with filthy images. We would be infected by the West’s capitalist propaganda. It was a cool August night in 1990; the Communist regime had officially collapsed eight months earlier, when Vaclav Havel, the longtime dissident, was elected president. And now the Rolling Stones had come to Prague. I was 16 then, and to this day I recall the posters promoting the concert, which lined the streets and the walls of the stadium: “The Rolling Stones roll in, Soviet army rolls out.” Soviet soldiers had been stationed in Czechoslovakia since 1968, when their tanks brutally crushed the so-called Prague Spring. My father was 21 at that time, dreaming of freedom and listening to bootlegged copies of “Let’s Spend the Night Together.” But it would be more than two decades before he would get to see the band live. During those years, you had to tune into foreign stations to hear the Stones. Communists called the band members “rotten junkies,” and said no decent socialist citizen would listen to them.
I only knew one Stones song, “Satisfaction” — but I knew it by heart. I had heard it for the first time on a pirated tape my father had bought on the black market in Hungary and smuggled into the country. It put an immediate spell on me. I was hugely impressed by the rough, loud guitar riff, so unlike the mellow sound of Czechoslovakian music. (The Communists frowned on the bass and the electric guitar, but they severely disapproved of the saxophone because they said it was invented by a Belgian imperialist.) Czechoslovakians had been urged for four decades to sacrifice their inner dreams to the collective happiness of the masses. People who went their own way — rebels — often ended up in jail.
That night in August, waiting for the Rolling Stones to come on stage, we felt like rebels.
The concert was held in the same stadium where the Communist government used to hold rallies and organize parades. My classmates and I had spent endless hours in that stadium, marching in formations that, seen from the stands above, were supposed to symbolize health, joy and the discipline of the masses. Now, instead of marching as one, we were ready to get loose. “We gotta get closer,” my father whispered into my ear as we tried to make our way through the crowd.
I sensed that everyone was nervous. They were accustomed to being lied to, to having promises broken. They didn’t quite believe that the Stones were really coming to play live. I could see that my father didn’t either. “We might see their photographs or a movie instead,” I heard some people saying, pointing to huge video screens installed inside the stadium. I started to have doubts myself. We had been waiting for five hours.
Suddenly, the lights dimmed. Drums started to pound, and the screens turned on as if by magic. “Oh my God, it is really happening,” whispered a woman standing close to me. She was expressing something more than just the thrill of a concert. She was saying that the Communists were truly gone. That we were finally free to do as we pleased.

(2009)

Q. Which of the following best captures what the Rolling Stones concert stood for in the author ’s mind?

Solution:

The answer can be inferred from the last line in the passage “She was expressing something more than just the thrill of a concert. She was saying that the Communists were truly gone. That we were finally free to do as we pleased.”