Test: Reading Comprehension (Based On Social Sciences) - 1


45 Questions MCQ Test Topic-wise Past Year Questions for CAT | Test: Reading Comprehension (Based On Social Sciences) - 1


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QUESTION: 1

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Contemporary internet shopping conjures a perfect storm of choice anxiety. Research has consistently held that people who are presented with a few options make better, easier decisions than those presented with many. . . . Helping consumers figure out what to buy amid an endless sea of choice online has become a cottage industry unto itself. Many brands and retailers now wield marketing buzzwords such as curation, differentiation, and discovery as they attempt to sell an assortment of stuff targeted to their ideal customer. Companies find such shoppers through the data gold mine of digital advertising, which can catalog people by gender, income level, personal interests, and more. Since Americans have lost the ability to sort through the sheer volume of the consumer choices available to them, a ghost now has to be in the retail machine, whether it’s an algorithm, an influencer, or some snazzy ad tech to help a product follow you around the internet. Indeed, choice fatigue is one reason so many people gravitate toward lifestyle influencers on Instagram—the relentlessly chic young moms and perpetually vacationing 20-somethings—who present an aspirational worldview, and then recommend the products and services that help achieve it. . . . For a relatively new class of consumer-products start-ups, there’s another method entirely. Instead of making sense of a sea of existing stuff, these companies claim to disrupt stuff as Americans know it. Casper (mattresses), Glossier (makeup), Away (suitcases), and many others have sprouted up to offer consumers freedom from choice: The companies have a few aesthetically pleasing and supposedly highly functional options, usually at mid-range prices. They’re selling nice things, but maybe more importantly, they’re selling a confidence in those things, and an ability to opt out of the stuff rat race. . . .
One-thousand-dollar mattresses and $300 suitcases might solve choice anxiety for a certain tier of consumer, but the companies that sell them, along with those that attempt to massage the larger stuff economy into something navigable, are still just working within a consumer market that’s broken in systemic ways. The presence of so much stuff in America might be more valuable if it were more evenly distributed, but stuff’s creators tend to focus their energy on those who already have plenty. As options have expanded for people with disposable income, the opportunity to buy even basic things such as fresh food or quality diapers has contracted for much of America’s lower classes.
For start-ups that promise accessible simplicity, their very structure still might eventually push them toward overwhelming variety. Most of these companies are based on hundreds of millions of dollars of venture capital, the investors of which tend to expect a steep growth rate that can’t be achieved by selling one great mattress or one great sneaker. Casper has expanded into bedroom furniture and bed linens. Glossier, after years of marketing itself as no-makeup makeup that requires little skill to apply, recently launched a full line of glittering color cosmetics. There may be no way to opt out of stuff by buying into the right thing.

(2019)

Q. Which one of the following best sums up the overall purpose of the examples of Casper and Glossier in the passage?

Solution:

Something very specific is being asked here, that is, which of the given options sums up the overall purpose of the examples of Casper and Glossier in the passage. As you read the passage, you will come across statements/sentences related to Casper and Glossier as follows: “Casper (mattresses), Glossier (makeup), Away (suitcases), and many others have sprouted up to offer consumers freedom from choice” “For start-ups that promise accessible simplicity, their very structure still might eventually push them toward overwhelming variety.” “Casper has expanded into bedroom furniture and bed linens. Glossier, after years of marketing itself as no-makeup makeup that requires little skill to apply, recently launched a full line of glittering color cosmetics.” The overall sense of these statements we get is that of something similar expressed in option (b). This is: “They might transform into what they were exceptions to.”

QUESTION: 2

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Contemporary internet shopping conjures a perfect storm of choice anxiety. Research has consistently held that people who are presented with a few options make better, easier decisions than those presented with many. . . . Helping consumers figure out what to buy amid an endless sea of choice online has become a cottage industry unto itself. Many brands and retailers now wield marketing buzzwords such as curation, differentiation, and discovery as they attempt to sell an assortment of stuff targeted to their ideal customer. Companies find such shoppers through the data gold mine of digital advertising, which can catalog people by gender, income level, personal interests, and more. Since Americans have lost the ability to sort through the sheer volume of the consumer choices available to them, a ghost now has to be in the retail machine, whether it’s an algorithm, an influencer, or some snazzy ad tech to help a product follow you around the internet. Indeed, choice fatigue is one reason so many people gravitate toward lifestyle influencers on Instagram—the relentlessly chic young moms and perpetually vacationing 20-somethings—who present an aspirational worldview, and then recommend the products and services that help achieve it. . . . For a relatively new class of consumer-products start-ups, there’s another method entirely. Instead of making sense of a sea of existing stuff, these companies claim to disrupt stuff as Americans know it. Casper (mattresses), Glossier (makeup), Away (suitcases), and many others have sprouted up to offer consumers freedom from choice: The companies have a few aesthetically pleasing and supposedly highly functional options, usually at mid-range prices. They’re selling nice things, but maybe more importantly, they’re selling a confidence in those things, and an ability to opt out of the stuff rat race. . . .
One-thousand-dollar mattresses and $300 suitcases might solve choice anxiety for a certain tier of consumer, but the companies that sell them, along with those that attempt to massage the larger stuff economy into something navigable, are still just working within a consumer market that’s broken in systemic ways. The presence of so much stuff in America might be more valuable if it were more evenly distributed, but stuff’s creators tend to focus their energy on those who already have plenty. As options have expanded for people with disposable income, the opportunity to buy even basic things such as fresh food or quality diapers has contracted for much of America’s lower classes.
For start-ups that promise accessible simplicity, their very structure still might eventually push them toward overwhelming variety. Most of these companies are based on hundreds of millions of dollars of venture capital, the investors of which tend to expect a steep growth rate that can’t be achieved by selling one great mattress or one great sneaker. Casper has expanded into bedroom furniture and bed linens. Glossier, after years of marketing itself as no-makeup makeup that requires little skill to apply, recently launched a full line of glittering color cosmetics. There may be no way to opt out of stuff by buying into the right thing.

(2019)

Q. A new food brand plans to launch a series of products in the American market. Which of the following product plans is most likely to be supported by the author of the passage?

Solution:

The author uses the phrase ‘choice fatigue’ which means the author would want limited choice. Secondly, the author appears to favour mid-range price: “The companies have a few aesthetically pleasing and supposedly highly functional options, usually at midrange prices.” Out of the given options, options (b) and (c) would fit better into the author’s preference and between (b) and (c), the second choice is better because the price range is more favourable in the mid range prince. (b).A range of 10 products priced between 5 and 10. (c).A range of 10 products priced between 10 and 25). Therefore, option (b) is the most preferred choice.

QUESTION: 3

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Contemporary internet shopping conjures a perfect storm of choice anxiety. Research has consistently held that people who are presented with a few options make better, easier decisions than those presented with many. . . . Helping consumers figure out what to buy amid an endless sea of choice online has become a cottage industry unto itself. Many brands and retailers now wield marketing buzzwords such as curation, differentiation, and discovery as they attempt to sell an assortment of stuff targeted to their ideal customer. Companies find such shoppers through the data gold mine of digital advertising, which can catalog people by gender, income level, personal interests, and more. Since Americans have lost the ability to sort through the sheer volume of the consumer choices available to them, a ghost now has to be in the retail machine, whether it’s an algorithm, an influencer, or some snazzy ad tech to help a product follow you around the internet. Indeed, choice fatigue is one reason so many people gravitate toward lifestyle influencers on Instagram—the relentlessly chic young moms and perpetually vacationing 20-somethings—who present an aspirational worldview, and then recommend the products and services that help achieve it. . . . For a relatively new class of consumer-products start-ups, there’s another method entirely. Instead of making sense of a sea of existing stuff, these companies claim to disrupt stuff as Americans know it. Casper (mattresses), Glossier (makeup), Away (suitcases), and many others have sprouted up to offer consumers freedom from choice: The companies have a few aesthetically pleasing and supposedly highly functional options, usually at mid-range prices. They’re selling nice things, but maybe more importantly, they’re selling a confidence in those things, and an ability to opt out of the stuff rat race. . . .
One-thousand-dollar mattresses and $300 suitcases might solve choice anxiety for a certain tier of consumer, but the companies that sell them, along with those that attempt to massage the larger stuff economy into something navigable, are still just working within a consumer market that’s broken in systemic ways. The presence of so much stuff in America might be more valuable if it were more evenly distributed, but stuff’s creators tend to focus their energy on those who already have plenty. As options have expanded for people with disposable income, the opportunity to buy even basic things such as fresh food or quality diapers has contracted for much of America’s lower classes.
For start-ups that promise accessible simplicity, their very structure still might eventually push them toward overwhelming variety. Most of these companies are based on hundreds of millions of dollars of venture capital, the investors of which tend to expect a steep growth rate that can’t be achieved by selling one great mattress or one great sneaker. Casper has expanded into bedroom furniture and bed linens. Glossier, after years of marketing itself as no-makeup makeup that requires little skill to apply, recently launched a full line of glittering color cosmetics. There may be no way to opt out of stuff by buying into the right thing.

(2019)

Q. Based on the passage, all of the following can be inferred about consumer behaviour EXCEPT that:

Solution:

When you are asked a question relating to inference that can be made from the passage, you may have to read the entire passage. Alternatively, read the options to identify what cannot be inferred from the passage. Let us go one by one.
The first option is: (a).too many options have made it difficult for consumers to trust products. This is certainly the inference that is there in the passage: “Casper (mattresses), Glossier (makeup), Away (suitcases), and many others have sprouted up to offer consumers freedom from choice: The companies have a few aesthetically pleasing and supposedly highly functional options, usually at mid-range prices.
The second option is: (b) consumers tend to prefer products by start-ups over those by established companies. We do not see an inference matching this, so this could be the possible answer but we may like to check the other options as well.
The third option is: (c) having too many product options can be overwhelming for consumers. This inference can be easily arrived at if we read the following in the passage: “Helping consumers figure out what to buy amid an endless sea of choice online has become a cottage industry unto itself. Many brands and retailers now wield marketing buzzwords such as curation, differentiation, and discovery as they attempt to sell an assortment of stuff targeted to their ideal customer. Companies find such shoppers through the data gold mine of digital advertising, which can catalog people by gender, income level, personal interests, and more. Since Americans have lost the ability to sort through the sheer volume of the consumer choices available to them…”
The fourth option is: (d) consumers are susceptible to marketing images that they see on social media. Now go through the following in the passage: “choice fatigue is one reason so many people gravitate toward lifestyle influencers on Instagram—the relentlessly chic young moms and perpetually vacationing 20-somethings— who present an aspirational worldview, and then recommend the products and services that help achieve it. . . .”
The extract clearly suggests that customers are susceptible (influenced by) to marketing images on the social media (Instagram).
Therefore, option (b) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 4

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Contemporary internet shopping conjures a perfect storm of choice anxiety. Research has consistently held that people who are presented with a few options make better, easier decisions than those presented with many. . . . Helping consumers figure out what to buy amid an endless sea of choice online has become a cottage industry unto itself. Many brands and retailers now wield marketing buzzwords such as curation, differentiation, and discovery as they attempt to sell an assortment of stuff targeted to their ideal customer. Companies find such shoppers through the data gold mine of digital advertising, which can catalog people by gender, income level, personal interests, and more. Since Americans have lost the ability to sort through the sheer volume of the consumer choices available to them, a ghost now has to be in the retail machine, whether it’s an algorithm, an influencer, or some snazzy ad tech to help a product follow you around the internet. Indeed, choice fatigue is one reason so many people gravitate toward lifestyle influencers on Instagram—the relentlessly chic young moms and perpetually vacationing 20-somethings—who present an aspirational worldview, and then recommend the products and services that help achieve it. . . . For a relatively new class of consumer-products start-ups, there’s another method entirely. Instead of making sense of a sea of existing stuff, these companies claim to disrupt stuff as Americans know it. Casper (mattresses), Glossier (makeup), Away (suitcases), and many others have sprouted up to offer consumers freedom from choice: The companies have a few aesthetically pleasing and supposedly highly functional options, usually at mid-range prices. They’re selling nice things, but maybe more importantly, they’re selling a confidence in those things, and an ability to opt out of the stuff rat race. . . .
One-thousand-dollar mattresses and $300 suitcases might solve choice anxiety for a certain tier of consumer, but the companies that sell them, along with those that attempt to massage the larger stuff economy into something navigable, are still just working within a consumer market that’s broken in systemic ways. The presence of so much stuff in America might be more valuable if it were more evenly distributed, but stuff’s creators tend to focus their energy on those who already have plenty. As options have expanded for people with disposable income, the opportunity to buy even basic things such as fresh food or quality diapers has contracted for much of America’s lower classes.
For start-ups that promise accessible simplicity, their very structure still might eventually push them toward overwhelming variety. Most of these companies are based on hundreds of millions of dollars of venture capital, the investors of which tend to expect a steep growth rate that can’t be achieved by selling one great mattress or one great sneaker. Casper has expanded into bedroom furniture and bed linens. Glossier, after years of marketing itself as no-makeup makeup that requires little skill to apply, recently launched a full line of glittering color cosmetics. There may be no way to opt out of stuff by buying into the right thing.

(2019)

Q. Which of the following hypothetical statements would add the least depth to the author’s prediction of the fate of startups offering few product options?

Solution:

Let us understand the question. The given options are a list of hypothetical statements, while the question asks you identify the statement that would add least depth to the author’s prediction of the fate of start-ups offering few product options. Towards the end of the passage, the author makes a claim that the start-ups will start offering a greater number of choices under the pressure to generate revenue. He cites the example of Casper and Glossier. Option (a) clearly says that Casper and Glossier have added more product ranges. In other words, it adds depth to that prediction. So we can eliminate this choice Option (b) also adds some depth to the prediction with their assertion that start-ups with few products are not an exception to the American consumer market. There is thus the implication that they should have more products otherwise they will fail. Option (c) can be easily said to provide the least depth to the author’s prediction. This option reads: “An exponential surge in their sales enables start-ups to meet their desired profit goals without expanding their product catalogue”. This statement gives the least depth to author’s prediction because it claims to meet the goals of the start-ups without expanding their product catalogue. Option (d) discusses about doubling the rate of taxation for start-ups. This may likely cause problems for them and they may likely fail. In other words, it also gives some depth to author’s prediction about start-ups with limited product range.

QUESTION: 5

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Contemporary internet shopping conjures a perfect storm of choice anxiety. Research has consistently held that people who are presented with a few options make better, easier decisions than those presented with many. . . . Helping consumers figure out what to buy amid an endless sea of choice online has become a cottage industry unto itself. Many brands and retailers now wield marketing buzzwords such as curation, differentiation, and discovery as they attempt to sell an assortment of stuff targeted to their ideal customer. Companies find such shoppers through the data gold mine of digital advertising, which can catalog people by gender, income level, personal interests, and more. Since Americans have lost the ability to sort through the sheer volume of the consumer choices available to them, a ghost now has to be in the retail machine, whether it’s an algorithm, an influencer, or some snazzy ad tech to help a product follow you around the internet. Indeed, choice fatigue is one reason so many people gravitate toward lifestyle influencers on Instagram—the relentlessly chic young moms and perpetually vacationing 20-somethings—who present an aspirational worldview, and then recommend the products and services that help achieve it. . . . For a relatively new class of consumer-products start-ups, there’s another method entirely. Instead of making sense of a sea of existing stuff, these companies claim to disrupt stuff as Americans know it. Casper (mattresses), Glossier (makeup), Away (suitcases), and many others have sprouted up to offer consumers freedom from choice: The companies have a few aesthetically pleasing and supposedly highly functional options, usually at mid-range prices. They’re selling nice things, but maybe more importantly, they’re selling a confidence in those things, and an ability to opt out of the stuff rat race. . . .
One-thousand-dollar mattresses and $300 suitcases might solve choice anxiety for a certain tier of consumer, but the companies that sell them, along with those that attempt to massage the larger stuff economy into something navigable, are still just working within a consumer market that’s broken in systemic ways. The presence of so much stuff in America might be more valuable if it were more evenly distributed, but stuff’s creators tend to focus their energy on those who already have plenty. As options have expanded for people with disposable income, the opportunity to buy even basic things such as fresh food or quality diapers has contracted for much of America’s lower classes.
For start-ups that promise accessible simplicity, their very structure still might eventually push them toward overwhelming variety. Most of these companies are based on hundreds of millions of dollars of venture capital, the investors of which tend to expect a steep growth rate that can’t be achieved by selling one great mattress or one great sneaker. Casper has expanded into bedroom furniture and bed linens. Glossier, after years of marketing itself as no-makeup makeup that requires little skill to apply, recently launched a full line of glittering color cosmetics. There may be no way to opt out of stuff by buying into the right thing.

(2019)

Q. All of the following, IF TRUE, would weaken the author’s claims EXCEPT:

Solution:

According to question, all the options except one would weaken author’s claims. You have to identify the option that would strengthen or not affect the author’s claim.
Option (a) Product options increased market competition, bringing down the prices of commodities, which, in turn, increased purchasing power of the poor. This option speaks in favour of giving greater product options to customers. This would weaken author’s argument who argues against overwhelming choice.
Option (b) The annual sales growth of companies with fewer product options were higher than that of companies which curated their products for target consumers.  This option appears to support the stand of the author who is in favour of offering limited choices to customers. This option shows that offering fewer product can bring positive results. Therefore, option (b) does not weaken the argument of the author but supports it on contrary. So it should be the right choice.
Option (c) The empowerment felt by purchasers in buying a commodity were directly proportional to the number of options they could choose from. In other words, the implication of this option is that greater the number of options or larger the choices the more empowered is the buyers. This weakens author’s argument for lesser number of choices.
Option (d) The annual sale of companies that hired lifestyle influencers on Instagram for marketing their products were 40% less than those that did not. According to this argument, going to the social media did not help the business Choice (d) goes out because people go to Instagram because they are overwhelmed with choices. If that fails (as the sales are 40 percent less) it will weaken the author’s argument.
Choice (a) speaks in favour of giving greater product options to customers. Choice (c) too does the same thing.

QUESTION: 6

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Scientists recently discovered that Emperor Penguins—one of Antarctica’s most celebrated species—employ a particularly unusual technique for surviving the daily chill. As detailed in an article published today in the journal Biology Letters, the birds minimize heat loss by keeping the outer surface of their plumage below the temperature of the surrounding air. At the same time, the penguins’ thick plumage insulates their body and keeps it toasty. . . .
The researchers analyzed thermographic images . . . taken over roughly a month during June 2008. During that period, the average air temperature was 0.32 degrees Fahrenheit. At the same time, the majority of the plumage covering the penguins’ bodies was even colder: the surface of their warmest body part, their feet, was an average 1.76 degrees Fahrenheit, but the plumage on their heads, chests and backs were –1.84, –7.24 and – 9.76 degrees Fahrenheit respectively. Overall, nearly the entire outer surface of the penguins’ bodies was below freezing at all times, except for their eyes and beaks. The scientists also used a computer simulation to determine how much heat was lost or gained from each part of the body—and discovered that by keeping their outer surface below air temperature, the birds might paradoxically be able to draw very slight amounts of heat from the air around them. 
The key to their trick is the difference between two different types of heat transfer: radiation and convection.
The penguins do lose internal body heat to the surrounding air through thermal radiation, just as our bodies do on a cold day. Because their bodies (but not surface plumage) are warmer than the surrounding air, heat gradually radiates outward over time, moving from a warmer material to a colder one. To maintain body temperature while losing heat, penguins, like all warm-blooded animals, rely on the metabolism of food. The penguins, though, have an additional strategy. Since their outer plumage is even colder than the air, the simulation showed that they might gain back a little of this heat through thermal convection—the transfer of heat via the movement of a fluid (in this case, the air). As the cold Antarctic air cycles around their bodies, slightly warmer air comes into contact with the plumage and donates minute amounts of heat back to the penguins, then cycles away at a slightly colder temperature.
Most of this heat, the researchers note, probably doesn’t make it all the way through the plumage and back to the penguins’ bodies, but it could make a slight difference. At the very least, the method by which a penguin’s plumage wicks heat from the bitterly cold air that surrounds it helps to cancel out some of the heat that’s radiating from its interior. And given the Emperors’ unusually demanding breeding cycle, every bit of warmth counts. . . . Since [penguins trek as far as 75 miles to the coast to breed and male penguins] don’t eat anything during [the incubation period of 64 days], conserving calories by giving up as little heat as possible is absolutely crucial.

(2019)

Q. Which of the following best explains the purpose of the word “paradoxically” as used by the author?

Solution:

In order to answer this question, you will have to find the sentence in which the word “paradox” has been used. This sentence in the passage is as follows: “…by keeping their outer surface below air temperature, the birds might paradoxically be able to draw very slight amounts of heat from the air around them…” The meaning of paradox means something that appears contradictory but may not be actually so. In the given context, it is a paradox that by keep your outer surface of the body cold, you are trying to draw heat from the air around your body. The first option says precisely this: Keeping a part of their body colder helps penguins keep their bodies warmer.
The second option is “Heat loss through radiation happens despite the heat gain through convection.” There is no paradox in it. It merely says heat loss and heat gain processes are taking place. In the same way, the other options also do not appear paradoxical. Option (c) might create some confusion. Option (c) is “Keeping their body colder helps penguins keep their plumage warmer.” But in this option, keeping their plumage warmer does not help them keep their body warmer as the context of the passage is about keeping their bodies warmer. So we will have to reject this option. Therefore, option (a) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 7

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Scientists recently discovered that Emperor Penguins—one of Antarctica’s most celebrated species—employ a particularly unusual technique for surviving the daily chill. As detailed in an article published today in the journal Biology Letters, the birds minimize heat loss by keeping the outer surface of their plumage below the temperature of the surrounding air. At the same time, the penguins’ thick plumage insulates their body and keeps it toasty. . . .
The researchers analyzed thermographic images . . . taken over roughly a month during June 2008. During that period, the average air temperature was 0.32 degrees Fahrenheit. At the same time, the majority of the plumage covering the penguins’ bodies was even colder: the surface of their warmest body part, their feet, was an average 1.76 degrees Fahrenheit, but the plumage on their heads, chests and backs were –1.84, –7.24 and – 9.76 degrees Fahrenheit respectively. Overall, nearly the entire outer surface of the penguins’ bodies was below freezing at all times, except for their eyes and beaks. The scientists also used a computer simulation to determine how much heat was lost or gained from each part of the body—and discovered that by keeping their outer surface below air temperature, the birds might paradoxically be able to draw very slight amounts of heat from the air around them. 
The key to their trick is the difference between two different types of heat transfer: radiation and convection.
The penguins do lose internal body heat to the surrounding air through thermal radiation, just as our bodies do on a cold day. Because their bodies (but not surface plumage) are warmer than the surrounding air, heat gradually radiates outward over time, moving from a warmer material to a colder one. To maintain body temperature while losing heat, penguins, like all warm-blooded animals, rely on the metabolism of food. The penguins, though, have an additional strategy. Since their outer plumage is even colder than the air, the simulation showed that they might gain back a little of this heat through thermal convection—the transfer of heat via the movement of a fluid (in this case, the air). As the cold Antarctic air cycles around their bodies, slightly warmer air comes into contact with the plumage and donates minute amounts of heat back to the penguins, then cycles away at a slightly colder temperature.
Most of this heat, the researchers note, probably doesn’t make it all the way through the plumage and back to the penguins’ bodies, but it could make a slight difference. At the very least, the method by which a penguin’s plumage wicks heat from the bitterly cold air that surrounds it helps to cancel out some of the heat that’s radiating from its interior. And given the Emperors’ unusually demanding breeding cycle, every bit of warmth counts. . . . Since [penguins trek as far as 75 miles to the coast to breed and male penguins] don’t eat anything during [the incubation period of 64 days], conserving calories by giving up as little heat as possible is absolutely crucial.

(2019)

Q. All of the following, if true, would negate the findings of the study reported in the passage EXCEPT:

Solution:

According to the question, all the options (considering they are true) negate the findings of the study but there is one option that does not negate the findings. Therefore, we can go to each of the options one by one to find out whether they contradict the points made in the passage or not.
The passage maintains that the outer air temperature is warmer than the plumage temperature. In contrast if the outer temperature gets colder than the plumage temperature, the point made in the passage which is the findings of the study would be negated and this position is taken by option (a) because the heat transfer from colder air outside to the warmer plumage will not take place. Therefore, we can reject option (a). Now let us come to choice (a). In choice (c), the plumage is warmer than the outer air of Antarctic, while the plumage has to be colder. Therefore, it negates the finding of the study in the passage. So this choice has to be rejected.
Choice (d) is about penguins’ plumage made of a material that did not allow any heat transfer through convection or radiation. But in the passage thermal convection helps the penguins gain some heat. Therefore, this option negates the findings of the study or the contention of the author of the passage.
However option (b) does not negate the finding of the study. The passage claims that the feet is the warmest part of the body and if you make it a little warmer, it is still the warmest part of the body. Option (b) correctly describes the average temperature of the feet of penguins in the month of June 2008. This does not negate the finding of the study. Hence, it is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 8

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Scientists recently discovered that Emperor Penguins—one of Antarctica’s most celebrated species—employ a particularly unusual technique for surviving the daily chill. As detailed in an article published today in the journal Biology Letters, the birds minimize heat loss by keeping the outer surface of their plumage below the temperature of the surrounding air. At the same time, the penguins’ thick plumage insulates their body and keeps it toasty. . . .
The researchers analyzed thermographic images . . . taken over roughly a month during June 2008. During that period, the average air temperature was 0.32 degrees Fahrenheit. At the same time, the majority of the plumage covering the penguins’ bodies was even colder: the surface of their warmest body part, their feet, was an average 1.76 degrees Fahrenheit, but the plumage on their heads, chests and backs were –1.84, –7.24 and – 9.76 degrees Fahrenheit respectively. Overall, nearly the entire outer surface of the penguins’ bodies was below freezing at all times, except for their eyes and beaks. The scientists also used a computer simulation to determine how much heat was lost or gained from each part of the body—and discovered that by keeping their outer surface below air temperature, the birds might paradoxically be able to draw very slight amounts of heat from the air around them. 
The key to their trick is the difference between two different types of heat transfer: radiation and convection.
The penguins do lose internal body heat to the surrounding air through thermal radiation, just as our bodies do on a cold day. Because their bodies (but not surface plumage) are warmer than the surrounding air, heat gradually radiates outward over time, moving from a warmer material to a colder one. To maintain body temperature while losing heat, penguins, like all warm-blooded animals, rely on the metabolism of food. The penguins, though, have an additional strategy. Since their outer plumage is even colder than the air, the simulation showed that they might gain back a little of this heat through thermal convection—the transfer of heat via the movement of a fluid (in this case, the air). As the cold Antarctic air cycles around their bodies, slightly warmer air comes into contact with the plumage and donates minute amounts of heat back to the penguins, then cycles away at a slightly colder temperature.
Most of this heat, the researchers note, probably doesn’t make it all the way through the plumage and back to the penguins’ bodies, but it could make a slight difference. At the very least, the method by which a penguin’s plumage wicks heat from the bitterly cold air that surrounds it helps to cancel out some of the heat that’s radiating from its interior. And given the Emperors’ unusually demanding breeding cycle, every bit of warmth counts. . . . Since [penguins trek as far as 75 miles to the coast to breed and male penguins] don’t eat anything during [the incubation period of 64 days], conserving calories by giving up as little heat as possible is absolutely crucial.

(2019)

Q. In the last sentence of paragraph 3, “slightly warmer air” and “at a slightly colder temperature” refer to ______ AND ______ respectively:

Solution:

The question refers to the paragraph 3 as already mentioned in the passage. It is about the last sentence in the third paragraph.  The following is the last sentence: “As the cold Antarctic air cycles around their bodies, slightly warmer air comes into contact with the plumage and donates minute amounts of heat back to the penguins, then cycles away at a slightly colder temperature.” You have to identify the correct reference or context of slightly warmer air and slightly colder temperature from the given options.
Option (a) is not the right or correct reference because it discusses about air inside the penguins’ bodies, while the last sentence is about the external air.
Option (b) makes some sense. Therefore, we will keep this option aside for a while as we examine the other options. It is known that the cold Antarctic’s air temperature is higher than that of the plumage so the slightly warmer air that comes in contact with the plumage. The air is coming from outside because it is maintained that cold Antarctic air is cycling around their bodies so the air has to be outside. Both options (a) and (c) discuss about air inside the plumage. Therefore, these two options are eliminated.
We are left with option (d) now. Let us examine this option. This option can be eliminated because this option talks about “the cold Antarctic air which becomes warmer because of the heat radiated out from penguins’ bodies” while the cold Antarctic air is not becoming warmer because of the heat radiated from the penguins’ bodies. Therefore, option (d) is eliminated.
Therefore, we are left with option (b) as the only plausible context or reference which is the right choice.

QUESTION: 9

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Scientists recently discovered that Emperor Penguins—one of Antarctica’s most celebrated species—employ a particularly unusual technique for surviving the daily chill. As detailed in an article published today in the journal Biology Letters, the birds minimize heat loss by keeping the outer surface of their plumage below the temperature of the surrounding air. At the same time, the penguins’ thick plumage insulates their body and keeps it toasty. . . .
The researchers analyzed thermographic images . . . taken over roughly a month during June 2008. During that period, the average air temperature was 0.32 degrees Fahrenheit. At the same time, the majority of the plumage covering the penguins’ bodies was even colder: the surface of their warmest body part, their feet, was an average 1.76 degrees Fahrenheit, but the plumage on their heads, chests and backs were –1.84, –7.24 and – 9.76 degrees Fahrenheit respectively. Overall, nearly the entire outer surface of the penguins’ bodies was below freezing at all times, except for their eyes and beaks. The scientists also used a computer simulation to determine how much heat was lost or gained from each part of the body—and discovered that by keeping their outer surface below air temperature, the birds might paradoxically be able to draw very slight amounts of heat from the air around them. 
The key to their trick is the difference between two different types of heat transfer: radiation and convection.
The penguins do lose internal body heat to the surrounding air through thermal radiation, just as our bodies do on a cold day. Because their bodies (but not surface plumage) are warmer than the surrounding air, heat gradually radiates outward over time, moving from a warmer material to a colder one. To maintain body temperature while losing heat, penguins, like all warm-blooded animals, rely on the metabolism of food. The penguins, though, have an additional strategy. Since their outer plumage is even colder than the air, the simulation showed that they might gain back a little of this heat through thermal convection—the transfer of heat via the movement of a fluid (in this case, the air). As the cold Antarctic air cycles around their bodies, slightly warmer air comes into contact with the plumage and donates minute amounts of heat back to the penguins, then cycles away at a slightly colder temperature.
Most of this heat, the researchers note, probably doesn’t make it all the way through the plumage and back to the penguins’ bodies, but it could make a slight difference. At the very least, the method by which a penguin’s plumage wicks heat from the bitterly cold air that surrounds it helps to cancel out some of the heat that’s radiating from its interior. And given the Emperors’ unusually demanding breeding cycle, every bit of warmth counts. . . . Since [penguins trek as far as 75 miles to the coast to breed and male penguins] don’t eat anything during [the incubation period of 64 days], conserving calories by giving up as little heat as possible is absolutely crucial.

(2019)

Q. Which of the following can be responsible for Emperor Penguins losing body heat?

Solution:

Let us find out whether the passage explains the factor responsible for emperor penguins losing body heat. Now let us go to each of the options one by one. Option (a) is reproduction process. The passage briefly hints that penguins need to conserve body heat during the reproduction process. Regarding option (b), the passage says something about thermal radiation as follows: “The penguins do lose internal body heat to the surrounding air through thermal radiation, just as our bodies do on a cold day. Because their bodies (but not surface plumage) are warmer than the surrounding air, heat gradually radiates outward over time, moving from a warmer material to a colder one.” Option (c) is food metabolism. Is food metabolism responsible for penguins losing body heat? The relevant sentence in the passage claims: To maintain body temperature while losing heat, penguins, like all warm-blooded animals, rely on the metabolism of food. It is clear that food metabolism is a strategy to conserve the body heat rather than losing heat. Therefore, we can eliminate this option. Option (d) is plumage. The passage claims that the outer air temperature is warmer than the plumage temperature: “the birds minimize heat loss by keeping the outer surface of their plumage below the temperature of the surrounding air.” Let us now analyze these options. The passage clearly states that plumage is responsible for generating body heat. Food metabolism also helps generate the body heat. The passage says that penguins lose body heat due to thermal radiation but the given choice is thermal convection. The passage says the following about thermal convection: “the simulation showed that they might gain back a little of this heat through thermal convection”. It means penguins gain body heat through thermal convection, while the question is about losing the body heat. Therefore, options (b), (c), and (d) are incorrect. Option (a) briefly hints that penguins need to conserve body heat during the reproduction process. Another line in the passage claims: “And given the Emperors’ unusually demanding breeding cycle, every bit of warmth counts...” This means the penguins are exposed to heat loss during the breeding cycle. In other words, their reproduction process results in heat loss.
So option (a) is the correct choice.

QUESTION: 10

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

In the past, credit for telling the tale of Aladdin has often gone to Antoine Galland . . . the first European translator of . . . Arabian Nights [which] started as a series of translations of an incomplete manuscript of a medieval Arabic story collection. . . But, though those tales were of medieval origin, Aladdin may be a more recent invention. Scholars have not found a manuscript of the story that predates the version published in 1712 by Galland, who wrote in his diary that he first heard the tale from a Syrian storyteller from Aleppo named Hanna Diyab . . .
Despite the fantastical elements of the story, scholars now think the main character may actually be based on a real person’s real experiences. . . . Though Galland never credited Diyab in his published translations of the Arabian Nights stories, Diyab wrote something of his own: a travelogue penned in the mid18th century. In it, he recalls telling Galland the story of Aladdin [and] describes his own hard-knocks upbringing and the way he marveled at the extravagance of Versailles. The descriptions he uses were very similar to the descriptions of the lavish palace that ended up in Galland’s version of the Aladdin story. [Therefore, author Paulo Lemos] Horta believes that “Aladdin might be the young Arab Maronite from Aleppo, marveling at the jewels and riches of Versailles.” . . .
For 300 years, scholars thought that the rags-to-riches story of Aladdin might have been inspired by the plots of French fairy tales that came out around the same time, or that the story was invented in that 18th century period as a byproduct of French Orientalism, a fascination with stereotypical exotic Middle Eastern luxuries that was prevalent then. The idea that Diyab might have based it on his own life — the experiences of a Middle Eastern man encountering the French, not vice-versa — flips the script. [According to Horta,] “Diyab was ideally placed to embody the overlapping world of East and West, blending the storytelling traditions of his homeland with his youthful observations of the wonder of 18th-century France.” . . .
To the scholars who study the tale, its narrative drama isn’t the only reason storytellers keep finding reason to return to Aladdin. It reflects not only “a history of the French and the Middle East, but also [a story about] Middle Easterners coming to Paris and that speaks to our world today,” as Horta puts it. “The day Diyab told the story of Aladdin to Galland, there were riots due to food shortages during the winter and spring of 1708 to 1709, and Diyab was sensitive to those people in a way that Galland is not. When you read this diary, you see this solidarity among the Arabs who were in Paris at the time. . . . There is little in the writings of Galland that would suggest that he was capable of developing a character like Aladdin with sympathy, but Diyab’s memoir reveals a narrator adept at capturing the distinctive psychology of a young protagonist, as well as recognizing the kinds of injustices and opportunities that can transform the path of any youthful adventurer.”

(2019)

Q. All of the following serve as evidence for the character of Aladdin being based on Hanna Diyab EXCEPT:

Solution:

According to the question, all of the choices except any one of them offer us evidence that the character of Aladdin is based on Hanna Diyab, that is Diyab can be said to be author of Aladdin’s character. We will have to visit the options one by one.
Option (a) is about Diyab’s cosmopolitanism and cross culture experience. This could well be the evidence because Diyab is in a position to create the narrative that characterizes the world of East and West. For instance, he can easily blend the story telling tradition of his home land with the wonderful world of 18th century France. He is thus capable of describing the wealth of Versailles due to his cross cultural experience. Therefore, option (a) is evidence, not an exception. Similarly, option (d) is also ruled out as an exception because it is evidence.
Now coming to Option (b), we can also find the evidence in it. If you read the second paragraph of the passage, you can find that Diyab wrote a travelogue in the mid 18th century. In this travelogue, he mentions having told Galland the story of Aladdin. He also mentions his hard-knocks upbringing in this travelogue, which supports the evidence that he could have possibly created the character of Aladdin.
If we notice the option (c) carefully, we would notice that it is merely Diyab’s narration of the original story of Aladdin to Galland. This cannot be taken as the evidence that Diyab is the creator of Aladdin’s character. It only means that he may have heard the story from some other source and is merely narrating it. In other words, it is not evidence in favour. It also means that this option is an exception, while all other options are evidences. Therefore, option (c) is our answer.

QUESTION: 11

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

In the past, credit for telling the tale of Aladdin has often gone to Antoine Galland . . . the first European translator of . . . Arabian Nights [which] started as a series of translations of an incomplete manuscript of a medieval Arabic story collection. . . But, though those tales were of medieval origin, Aladdin may be a more recent invention. Scholars have not found a manuscript of the story that predates the version published in 1712 by Galland, who wrote in his diary that he first heard the tale from a Syrian storyteller from Aleppo named Hanna Diyab . . .
Despite the fantastical elements of the story, scholars now think the main character may actually be based on a real person’s real experiences. . . . Though Galland never credited Diyab in his published translations of the Arabian Nights stories, Diyab wrote something of his own: a travelogue penned in the mid18th century. In it, he recalls telling Galland the story of Aladdin [and] describes his own hard-knocks upbringing and the way he marveled at the extravagance of Versailles. The descriptions he uses were very similar to the descriptions of the lavish palace that ended up in Galland’s version of the Aladdin story. [Therefore, author Paulo Lemos] Horta believes that “Aladdin might be the young Arab Maronite from Aleppo, marveling at the jewels and riches of Versailles.” . . .
For 300 years, scholars thought that the rags-to-riches story of Aladdin might have been inspired by the plots of French fairy tales that came out around the same time, or that the story was invented in that 18th century period as a byproduct of French Orientalism, a fascination with stereotypical exotic Middle Eastern luxuries that was prevalent then. The idea that Diyab might have based it on his own life — the experiences of a Middle Eastern man encountering the French, not vice-versa — flips the script. [According to Horta,] “Diyab was ideally placed to embody the overlapping world of East and West, blending the storytelling traditions of his homeland with his youthful observations of the wonder of 18th-century France.” . . .
To the scholars who study the tale, its narrative drama isn’t the only reason storytellers keep finding reason to return to Aladdin. It reflects not only “a history of the French and the Middle East, but also [a story about] Middle Easterners coming to Paris and that speaks to our world today,” as Horta puts it. “The day Diyab told the story of Aladdin to Galland, there were riots due to food shortages during the winter and spring of 1708 to 1709, and Diyab was sensitive to those people in a way that Galland is not. When you read this diary, you see this solidarity among the Arabs who were in Paris at the time. . . . There is little in the writings of Galland that would suggest that he was capable of developing a character like Aladdin with sympathy, but Diyab’s memoir reveals a narrator adept at capturing the distinctive psychology of a young protagonist, as well as recognizing the kinds of injustices and opportunities that can transform the path of any youthful adventurer.”

(2019)

Q. Which of the following is the primary reason for why storytellers are still fascinated by the story of Aladdin?

Solution:

Read the last paragraph of the passage. It gives us a clue to the answer why story tellers are still fascinated by the story of Aladdin. According to the first few sentences of the last paragraph, “To the scholars who study the tale, its narrative drama isn’t the only reason storytellers keep finding reason to return to Aladdin. It reflects not only “a history of the French and the Middle East, but also [a story about] Middle Easterners coming to Paris and that speaks to our world today,” as Horta puts it.”
From the above sentences, it cannot be inferred that it is about 18th century French Orientalist attitude. There is no mention about it in the passage. It is also not about rags to riches story that makes the story fascinating even today. There is no mention of this in the passage. However, it is not only a history of French and the Middle East but also a story about Middle Easterners coming to Paris and that speaks to our world today. In other words, it can be inferred that the traveller’s experience that inspired the tale of Aladdin resonates even today. Therefore, option (b) is the right choice.

QUESTION: 12

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

In the past, credit for telling the tale of Aladdin has often gone to Antoine Galland . . . the first European translator of . . . Arabian Nights [which] started as a series of translations of an incomplete manuscript of a medieval Arabic story collection. . . But, though those tales were of medieval origin, Aladdin may be a more recent invention. Scholars have not found a manuscript of the story that predates the version published in 1712 by Galland, who wrote in his diary that he first heard the tale from a Syrian storyteller from Aleppo named Hanna Diyab . . .
Despite the fantastical elements of the story, scholars now think the main character may actually be based on a real person’s real experiences. . . . Though Galland never credited Diyab in his published translations of the Arabian Nights stories, Diyab wrote something of his own: a travelogue penned in the mid18th century. In it, he recalls telling Galland the story of Aladdin [and] describes his own hard-knocks upbringing and the way he marveled at the extravagance of Versailles. The descriptions he uses were very similar to the descriptions of the lavish palace that ended up in Galland’s version of the Aladdin story. [Therefore, author Paulo Lemos] Horta believes that “Aladdin might be the young Arab Maronite from Aleppo, marveling at the jewels and riches of Versailles.” . . .
For 300 years, scholars thought that the rags-to-riches story of Aladdin might have been inspired by the plots of French fairy tales that came out around the same time, or that the story was invented in that 18th century period as a byproduct of French Orientalism, a fascination with stereotypical exotic Middle Eastern luxuries that was prevalent then. The idea that Diyab might have based it on his own life — the experiences of a Middle Eastern man encountering the French, not vice-versa — flips the script. [According to Horta,] “Diyab was ideally placed to embody the overlapping world of East and West, blending the storytelling traditions of his homeland with his youthful observations of the wonder of 18th-century France.” . . .
To the scholars who study the tale, its narrative drama isn’t the only reason storytellers keep finding reason to return to Aladdin. It reflects not only “a history of the French and the Middle East, but also [a story about] Middle Easterners coming to Paris and that speaks to our world today,” as Horta puts it. “The day Diyab told the story of Aladdin to Galland, there were riots due to food shortages during the winter and spring of 1708 to 1709, and Diyab was sensitive to those people in a way that Galland is not. When you read this diary, you see this solidarity among the Arabs who were in Paris at the time. . . . There is little in the writings of Galland that would suggest that he was capable of developing a character like Aladdin with sympathy, but Diyab’s memoir reveals a narrator adept at capturing the distinctive psychology of a young protagonist, as well as recognizing the kinds of injustices and opportunities that can transform the path of any youthful adventurer.”

(2019)

Q. The author of the passage is most likely to agree with which of the following explanations for the origins of the story of Aladdin?

Solution:

Let us understand the question. In simple terms we have to select the option that explains the origin of the story of Aladdin in the passage. It is also certain that author will most likely agree with this explanation. If you read the passage carefully, you will realize that the author is trying to prove that Diyab is the author of the passage. The choice that most certainly proves Diyab as the author of Aladdin is the best choice. Option (a) claims that author of Aladdin is Diyab. This could be your possible choice. Let us see other options as well. According to Option (b), the story of Aladdin came from Diyab but it came to Diyab from an incomplete medieval manuscript. In other words, it is doubtful that Diyab is the original author of the story of Aladdin. Therefore, we may have to reject option (b). Option (c) does not even mention Diyab as the author but claims that the story of Aladdin can be attributed to an undiscovered, incomplete manuscript of a medieval Arabic collection of stories. So this option is also rejected.
Option (d) is also rejected because it claims to have derived the story of Aladdin from Diyab’s travelogue. In other words, the story of Aladdin is attributed to Galland.
Therefore, our best choice is option (a).

QUESTION: 13

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

In the past, credit for telling the tale of Aladdin has often gone to Antoine Galland . . . the first European translator of . . . Arabian Nights [which] started as a series of translations of an incomplete manuscript of a medieval Arabic story collection. . . But, though those tales were of medieval origin, Aladdin may be a more recent invention. Scholars have not found a manuscript of the story that predates the version published in 1712 by Galland, who wrote in his diary that he first heard the tale from a Syrian storyteller from Aleppo named Hanna Diyab . . .
Despite the fantastical elements of the story, scholars now think the main character may actually be based on a real person’s real experiences. . . . Though Galland never credited Diyab in his published translations of the Arabian Nights stories, Diyab wrote something of his own: a travelogue penned in the mid18th century. In it, he recalls telling Galland the story of Aladdin [and] describes his own hard-knocks upbringing and the way he marveled at the extravagance of Versailles. The descriptions he uses were very similar to the descriptions of the lavish palace that ended up in Galland’s version of the Aladdin story. [Therefore, author Paulo Lemos] Horta believes that “Aladdin might be the young Arab Maronite from Aleppo, marveling at the jewels and riches of Versailles.” . . .
For 300 years, scholars thought that the rags-to-riches story of Aladdin might have been inspired by the plots of French fairy tales that came out around the same time, or that the story was invented in that 18th century period as a byproduct of French Orientalism, a fascination with stereotypical exotic Middle Eastern luxuries that was prevalent then. The idea that Diyab might have based it on his own life — the experiences of a Middle Eastern man encountering the French, not vice-versa — flips the script. [According to Horta,] “Diyab was ideally placed to embody the overlapping world of East and West, blending the storytelling traditions of his homeland with his youthful observations of the wonder of 18th-century France.” . . .
To the scholars who study the tale, its narrative drama isn’t the only reason storytellers keep finding reason to return to Aladdin. It reflects not only “a history of the French and the Middle East, but also [a story about] Middle Easterners coming to Paris and that speaks to our world today,” as Horta puts it. “The day Diyab told the story of Aladdin to Galland, there were riots due to food shortages during the winter and spring of 1708 to 1709, and Diyab was sensitive to those people in a way that Galland is not. When you read this diary, you see this solidarity among the Arabs who were in Paris at the time. . . . There is little in the writings of Galland that would suggest that he was capable of developing a character like Aladdin with sympathy, but Diyab’s memoir reveals a narrator adept at capturing the distinctive psychology of a young protagonist, as well as recognizing the kinds of injustices and opportunities that can transform the path of any youthful adventurer.”

(2019)

Q. Which of the following does not contribute to the passage’s claim about the authorship of Aladdin?

Solution:

We have to find out which among the given choices does not answer or contribute to the claim about Aladdin’s authorship. Let us verify each of the options one by one. Option (a) is about Diyab as the author of the Aladdin. Therefore, it contributes to the claim. Option (b) is clearly found in the passage. Read the following in the passage towards the end: “…Diyab’s memoir reveals a narrator adept at capturing the distinctive psychology of a young Protagonist…”. Option (d) is “Galland’s acknowledgment of Diyab in his diary”. This choice supports the claim that Diyab could be the author of Aladdin. This leaves us with option (c). This option does not support the claim because the author disputes the evidence of ‘the French fairy tales’. Read the following sentence in the passage: “The idea that Diyab might have based it on his own life — the experiences of a Middle Eastern man encountering the French, not vice-versa — flips the script.” The meaning is clear. The story or script that Aladdin was inspired by French Fairy Tales of the18th century is getting flipped.

QUESTION: 14

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

In the past, credit for telling the tale of Aladdin has often gone to Antoine Galland . . . the first European translator of . . . Arabian Nights [which] started as a series of translations of an incomplete manuscript of a medieval Arabic story collection. . . But, though those tales were of medieval origin, Aladdin may be a more recent invention. Scholars have not found a manuscript of the story that predates the version published in 1712 by Galland, who wrote in his diary that he first heard the tale from a Syrian storyteller from Aleppo named Hanna Diyab . . .
Despite the fantastical elements of the story, scholars now think the main character may actually be based on a real person’s real experiences. . . . Though Galland never credited Diyab in his published translations of the Arabian Nights stories, Diyab wrote something of his own: a travelogue penned in the mid18th century. In it, he recalls telling Galland the story of Aladdin [and] describes his own hard-knocks upbringing and the way he marveled at the extravagance of Versailles. The descriptions he uses were very similar to the descriptions of the lavish palace that ended up in Galland’s version of the Aladdin story. [Therefore, author Paulo Lemos] Horta believes that “Aladdin might be the young Arab Maronite from Aleppo, marveling at the jewels and riches of Versailles.” . . .
For 300 years, scholars thought that the rags-to-riches story of Aladdin might have been inspired by the plots of French fairy tales that came out around the same time, or that the story was invented in that 18th century period as a byproduct of French Orientalism, a fascination with stereotypical exotic Middle Eastern luxuries that was prevalent then. The idea that Diyab might have based it on his own life — the experiences of a Middle Eastern man encountering the French, not vice-versa — flips the script. [According to Horta,] “Diyab was ideally placed to embody the overlapping world of East and West, blending the storytelling traditions of his homeland with his youthful observations of the wonder of 18th-century France.” . . .
To the scholars who study the tale, its narrative drama isn’t the only reason storytellers keep finding reason to return to Aladdin. It reflects not only “a history of the French and the Middle East, but also [a story about] Middle Easterners coming to Paris and that speaks to our world today,” as Horta puts it. “The day Diyab told the story of Aladdin to Galland, there were riots due to food shortages during the winter and spring of 1708 to 1709, and Diyab was sensitive to those people in a way that Galland is not. When you read this diary, you see this solidarity among the Arabs who were in Paris at the time. . . . There is little in the writings of Galland that would suggest that he was capable of developing a character like Aladdin with sympathy, but Diyab’s memoir reveals a narrator adept at capturing the distinctive psychology of a young protagonist, as well as recognizing the kinds of injustices and opportunities that can transform the path of any youthful adventurer.”

(2019)

Q. Which of the following, if true, would invalidate the inversion that the phrase “flips the script” refers to?

Solution:

The given phrase is “flips the script”. It means change our understanding of something. In the present context, the initial thinking of the scholars was Aladdin was inspired by the 18th century French Fairy tales. However what flips the script in this case is the idea that “Diyab might have based it on his own life — the experiences of a Middle Eastern man encountering the French, not vice-versa — flips the script.” Now the question is what or which among the given options considering them to be true would invalidate the idea that the script is based on Diyab’s life.
In other words, which among the given choices would establish the opposite of the contention made out by the phrase ‘flip the script’. The key to answering this question correctly lies in understanding the question. When the inversion in flips the script is invalidated, the credit for Aladdin is not given to Diyab. So your task is to find an option that either takes away the credit from Diyab or does not give him credit for Aladdin. Option (a) in some ways directly or indirectly gives credit to Diyab. So it cannot be the answer.
Option (b) also gives credit to Diyab indirectly because this option refers to Diyab’s travelogues with the only difference that the city described is Bordeaux instead of Versailles. The link between Diyab and Aladdin still exists in this option. Option (c) does not take away credit from Diyab. This option claims that French fairy tales of the eighteenth century did not have rags-to-riches plot lines like that of the tale of Aladdin. In fact this claim only endorses the credit to Diyab. Option (d) appears to be the right choice because we find Diayb discredited for Aladdin because description of opulence in Hanna Diyab’s and Antoine Galland’s narratives bore no resemblance to each other. If there is no resemblance, it means only one thing and that is there is no evidence that Diyab ever narrated the story to Galland as the same is claimed by Galland in his diary. This fact would dispute the fact that Hanna Diyab created the character of Aladdin.

QUESTION: 15

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

British colonial policy . . . went through two policy phases, or at least there were two strategies between which its policies actually oscillated, sometimes to its great advantage. At first, the new colonial apparatus exercised caution, and occupied India by a mix of military power and subtle diplomacy, the high ground in the middle of the circle of circles. This, however, pushed them into contradictions. For, whatever their sense of the strangeness of the country and the thinness of colonial presence, the British colonial state represented the great conquering discourse of Enlightenment rationalism, entering India precisely at the moment of its greatest unchecked arrogance. As inheritors and representatives of this discourse, which carried everything before it, this colonial state could hardly adopt for long such a self-denying attitude. It had restructured everything in Europe—the productive system, the political regimes, the moral and cognitive orders—and would do the same in India, particularly as some empirically inclined theorists of that generation considered the colonies a massive laboratory of utilitarian or other theoretical experiments. Consequently, the colonial state could not settle simply for eminence at the cost of its marginality; it began to take initiatives to introduce the logic of modernity into Indian society But this modernity did not enter a passive society. Sometimes, its initiatives were resisted by pre-existing structural forms. At times, there was a more direct form of collective resistance. Therefore the map of continuity and discontinuity that this state left behind at the time of independence was rather complex and has to be traced with care.
Most significantly, of course, initiatives for . . . modernity came to assume an external character. The acceptance of modernity came to be connected, ineradicably, with subjection. This again points to two different problems, one theoretical, the other political. Theoretically, because modernity was externally introduced, it is explanatorily unhelpful to apply the logical format of the transition process’ to this pattern of change. Such a logical format would be wrong on two counts. First, however subtly, it would imply that what was proposed to be built was something like European capitalism. (And, in any case, historians have forcefully argued that what it was to replace was not like feudalism, with or without modificatory adjectives.) But, more fundamentally, the logical structure of endogenous change does not apply here. Here transformation agendas attack as an external force. This externality is not something that can be casually mentioned and forgotten. It is inscribed on every move, every object, every proposal, every legislative act. each line of causality. It comes to be marked on the epoch itself. This repetitive emphasis on externality should not be seen as a nationalist initiative that is so well rehearsed in Indian social science. . . .
Quite apart from the externality of the entire historical proposal of modernity, some of its contents were remarkable. . . Economic reforms, or rather alterations . . . did not foreshadow the construction of a classical capitalist economy, with its necessary emphasis on extractive and transport sectors. What happened was the creation of a degenerate version of capitalism —what early dependency theorists called the ‘development of underdevelopment’.

(2019)

Q. Which of the following observations is a valid conclusion to draw from the author’s statement that “the logical structure of endogenous change does not apply here. Here transformation agendas attack as an external force”?

Solution:

In order to attempt this question successfully, you need to understand the meaning of the sentence and words used in it. The word endogenous must be understood in its right context. The phrase endogenous change means change from within. The meaning of the sentence is that the transformation in society resulted out of external forces rather due to internal changes. Option (b) is the right answer because it claims that transformation of Indian society was not internal or organic (organic is something taking place naturally. Internal change is organic) but was forced by colonial agendas or external forces.

QUESTION: 16

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

British colonial policy . . . went through two policy phases, or at least there were two strategies between which its policies actually oscillated, sometimes to its great advantage. At first, the new colonial apparatus exercised caution, and occupied India by a mix of military power and subtle diplomacy, the high ground in the middle of the circle of circles. This, however, pushed them into contradictions. For, whatever their sense of the strangeness of the country and the thinness of colonial presence, the British colonial state represented the great conquering discourse of Enlightenment rationalism, entering India precisely at the moment of its greatest unchecked arrogance. As inheritors and representatives of this discourse, which carried everything before it, this colonial state could hardly adopt for long such a self-denying attitude. It had restructured everything in Europe—the productive system, the political regimes, the moral and cognitive orders—and would do the same in India, particularly as some empirically inclined theorists of that generation considered the colonies a massive laboratory of utilitarian or other theoretical experiments. Consequently, the colonial state could not settle simply for eminence at the cost of its marginality; it began to take initiatives to introduce the logic of modernity into Indian society But this modernity did not enter a passive society. Sometimes, its initiatives were resisted by pre-existing structural forms. At times, there was a more direct form of collective resistance. Therefore the map of continuity and discontinuity that this state left behind at the time of independence was rather complex and has to be traced with care.
Most significantly, of course, initiatives for . . . modernity came to assume an external character. The acceptance of modernity came to be connected, ineradicably, with subjection. This again points to two different problems, one theoretical, the other political. Theoretically, because modernity was externally introduced, it is explanatorily unhelpful to apply the logical format of the transition process’ to this pattern of change. Such a logical format would be wrong on two counts. First, however subtly, it would imply that what was proposed to be built was something like European capitalism. (And, in any case, historians have forcefully argued that what it was to replace was not like feudalism, with or without modificatory adjectives.) But, more fundamentally, the logical structure of endogenous change does not apply here. Here transformation agendas attack as an external force. This externality is not something that can be casually mentioned and forgotten. It is inscribed on every move, every object, every proposal, every legislative act. each line of causality. It comes to be marked on the epoch itself. This repetitive emphasis on externality should not be seen as a nationalist initiative that is so well rehearsed in Indian social science. . . .
Quite apart from the externality of the entire historical proposal of modernity, some of its contents were remarkable. . . Economic reforms, or rather alterations . . . did not foreshadow the construction of a classical capitalist economy, with its necessary emphasis on extractive and transport sectors. What happened was the creation of a degenerate version of capitalism —what early dependency theorists called the ‘development of underdevelopment’.

(2019)

Q. “Consequently, the colonial state could not settle simply for eminence at the cost of its marginality; it began to take initiatives to introduce the logic of modernity into Indian society.” Which of the following best captures the sense of this statement?

Solution:

This question can be easily attempted without referring back to the passage. You only need to understand the meaning of the sentence given in question. When we say something is marginalized it means, it is made insignificant or relegated to the margins. According to the sentence, the colonial state was marginalized. It means the colonial state was relegated to the periphery of the Indian society. In this case the colonial state is the small ruling elite which was marginalized because it was a small group. In order to come out of the marginalization, it tried to introduce modernity in the Indian society. Modernization effort in effect was an attempt at mainstreaming the Indian society. If colonial India was modernized then the colonial state would be a part of the mainstream Indian society. If we look at the options in the background of the above explanation, it will be clear that option (d) is the right choice.

QUESTION: 17

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

British colonial policy . . . went through two policy phases, or at least there were two strategies between which its policies actually oscillated, sometimes to its great advantage. At first, the new colonial apparatus exercised caution, and occupied India by a mix of military power and subtle diplomacy, the high ground in the middle of the circle of circles. This, however, pushed them into contradictions. For, whatever their sense of the strangeness of the country and the thinness of colonial presence, the British colonial state represented the great conquering discourse of Enlightenment rationalism, entering India precisely at the moment of its greatest unchecked arrogance. As inheritors and representatives of this discourse, which carried everything before it, this colonial state could hardly adopt for long such a self-denying attitude. It had restructured everything in Europe—the productive system, the political regimes, the moral and cognitive orders—and would do the same in India, particularly as some empirically inclined theorists of that generation considered the colonies a massive laboratory of utilitarian or other theoretical experiments. Consequently, the colonial state could not settle simply for eminence at the cost of its marginality; it began to take initiatives to introduce the logic of modernity into Indian society But this modernity did not enter a passive society. Sometimes, its initiatives were resisted by pre-existing structural forms. At times, there was a more direct form of collective resistance. Therefore the map of continuity and discontinuity that this state left behind at the time of independence was rather complex and has to be traced with care.
Most significantly, of course, initiatives for . . . modernity came to assume an external character. The acceptance of modernity came to be connected, ineradicably, with subjection. This again points to two different problems, one theoretical, the other political. Theoretically, because modernity was externally introduced, it is explanatorily unhelpful to apply the logical format of the transition process’ to this pattern of change. Such a logical format would be wrong on two counts. First, however subtly, it would imply that what was proposed to be built was something like European capitalism. (And, in any case, historians have forcefully argued that what it was to replace was not like feudalism, with or without modificatory adjectives.) But, more fundamentally, the logical structure of endogenous change does not apply here. Here transformation agendas attack as an external force. This externality is not something that can be casually mentioned and forgotten. It is inscribed on every move, every object, every proposal, every legislative act. each line of causality. It comes to be marked on the epoch itself. This repetitive emphasis on externality should not be seen as a nationalist initiative that is so well rehearsed in Indian social science. . . .
Quite apart from the externality of the entire historical proposal of modernity, some of its contents were remarkable. . . Economic reforms, or rather alterations . . . did not foreshadow the construction of a classical capitalist economy, with its necessary emphasis on extractive and transport sectors. What happened was the creation of a degenerate version of capitalism —what early dependency theorists called the ‘development of underdevelopment’.

(2019)

Q. All of the following statements, if true, could be seen as supporting the arguments in the passage, EXCEPT:

Solution:

According to the question, all of the options give support the arguments in the passage, but there is one option that does not support the arguments. You can easily identify the arguments made by the author in the passage. The points given in the options may either not be mentioned in the passage or may be opposite of the points made by the author. In both the cases, they can be said to be not supporting the arguments.
You may easily note that (b), (c) and (d) options support the arguments. Option d is “the introduction of capitalism in India was not through the transformation of feudalism, as happened in Europe.” This supports the argument because the author mentions in the second paragraph that historians have argued that capitalism in India was introduced without any modification.
Option (c) “the introduction of capitalism in India was not through the transformation of feudalism, as happened in Europe” also supports the argument because it has been mentioned in the passage. In paragraph 1, the author says, “as some empirically inclined theorists of that generation considered the colonies a massive laboratory of utilitarian or other theoretical experiments”. This can lead us to conclude that option (c) supports the argument made by the author.
Option (b) is also mentioned in the passage. Option (b) has come towards the end of the passage, in the last para. If you read the last para carefully, you might come across the statement which means since modernity was externally imposed, it led to development of underdevelopment.
Option (a) does not support the argument. Towards the end of the first paragraph you will find the following sentences: “But this modernity did not enter a passive society. Sometimes, its initiatives were resisted by pre-existing structural forms. At times, there was a more direct form of collective resistance.” From this, you can conclude that modernity in Indian society was not induced by resistance. The passage further says that “the map of continuity and discontinuity that this state left behind at the time of independence was rather complex and has to be traced with care.” Therefore option (a) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 18

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

British colonial policy . . . went through two policy phases, or at least there were two strategies between which its policies actually oscillated, sometimes to its great advantage. At first, the new colonial apparatus exercised caution, and occupied India by a mix of military power and subtle diplomacy, the high ground in the middle of the circle of circles. This, however, pushed them into contradictions. For, whatever their sense of the strangeness of the country and the thinness of colonial presence, the British colonial state represented the great conquering discourse of Enlightenment rationalism, entering India precisely at the moment of its greatest unchecked arrogance. As inheritors and representatives of this discourse, which carried everything before it, this colonial state could hardly adopt for long such a self-denying attitude. It had restructured everything in Europe—the productive system, the political regimes, the moral and cognitive orders—and would do the same in India, particularly as some empirically inclined theorists of that generation considered the colonies a massive laboratory of utilitarian or other theoretical experiments. Consequently, the colonial state could not settle simply for eminence at the cost of its marginality; it began to take initiatives to introduce the logic of modernity into Indian society But this modernity did not enter a passive society. Sometimes, its initiatives were resisted by pre-existing structural forms. At times, there was a more direct form of collective resistance. Therefore the map of continuity and discontinuity that this state left behind at the time of independence was rather complex and has to be traced with care.
Most significantly, of course, initiatives for . . . modernity came to assume an external character. The acceptance of modernity came to be connected, ineradicably, with subjection. This again points to two different problems, one theoretical, the other political. Theoretically, because modernity was externally introduced, it is explanatorily unhelpful to apply the logical format of the transition process’ to this pattern of change. Such a logical format would be wrong on two counts. First, however subtly, it would imply that what was proposed to be built was something like European capitalism. (And, in any case, historians have forcefully argued that what it was to replace was not like feudalism, with or without modificatory adjectives.) But, more fundamentally, the logical structure of endogenous change does not apply here. Here transformation agendas attack as an external force. This externality is not something that can be casually mentioned and forgotten. It is inscribed on every move, every object, every proposal, every legislative act. each line of causality. It comes to be marked on the epoch itself. This repetitive emphasis on externality should not be seen as a nationalist initiative that is so well rehearsed in Indian social science. . . .
Quite apart from the externality of the entire historical proposal of modernity, some of its contents were remarkable. . . Economic reforms, or rather alterations . . . did not foreshadow the construction of a classical capitalist economy, with its necessary emphasis on extractive and transport sectors. What happened was the creation of a degenerate version of capitalism —what early dependency theorists called the ‘development of underdevelopment’.

(2019)

Q. All of the following statements about British colonialism can be inferred from the first paragraph, EXCEPT that it:

Solution:

Read the first paragraph carefully. Now read the given options. It will be clear to you that all the options except option (b) can be inferred from the first paragraph. Treatment of colonies as experimental sites is mentioned in the first paragraph, which is option (a). Similarly, enlightenment rationalism as the motivation behind the change in colonial policy is also mentioned in the first paragraph. This is option (d).  The sentence in the first paragraph, “It had restructured everything in Europe—the productive system, the political regimes, the moral and cognitive orders—and would do the same in India,” appears to support option (c). From the above, it is not difficult to see that options (a) , (c), and (d) are supported or can be inferred about the British colonialism. Now we are left with option (b). It is “it faced resistance from existing structural forms of Indian modernity.” You may think this is also given in the passage or can be inferred. However, there is a catch, the exact sentence in the passage is “Sometimes, its initiatives were resisted by pre-existing structural forms.” So the point to note is that the resistance was not from existing structural forms of Indian modernity as given in the option, rather resistance was from the pre-existing structural forms or the traditional structural forms as given in the passage. Therefore, option (b) cannot be inferred and hence it is the correct answer.  

QUESTION: 19

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

British colonial policy . . . went through two policy phases, or at least there were two strategies between which its policies actually oscillated, sometimes to its great advantage. At first, the new colonial apparatus exercised caution, and occupied India by a mix of military power and subtle diplomacy, the high ground in the middle of the circle of circles. This, however, pushed them into contradictions. For, whatever their sense of the strangeness of the country and the thinness of colonial presence, the British colonial state represented the great conquering discourse of Enlightenment rationalism, entering India precisely at the moment of its greatest unchecked arrogance. As inheritors and representatives of this discourse, which carried everything before it, this colonial state could hardly adopt for long such a self-denying attitude. It had restructured everything in Europe—the productive system, the political regimes, the moral and cognitive orders—and would do the same in India, particularly as some empirically inclined theorists of that generation considered the colonies a massive laboratory of utilitarian or other theoretical experiments. Consequently, the colonial state could not settle simply for eminence at the cost of its marginality; it began to take initiatives to introduce the logic of modernity into Indian society But this modernity did not enter a passive society. Sometimes, its initiatives were resisted by pre-existing structural forms. At times, there was a more direct form of collective resistance. Therefore the map of continuity and discontinuity that this state left behind at the time of independence was rather complex and has to be traced with care.
Most significantly, of course, initiatives for . . . modernity came to assume an external character. The acceptance of modernity came to be connected, ineradicably, with subjection. This again points to two different problems, one theoretical, the other political. Theoretically, because modernity was externally introduced, it is explanatorily unhelpful to apply the logical format of the transition process’ to this pattern of change. Such a logical format would be wrong on two counts. First, however subtly, it would imply that what was proposed to be built was something like European capitalism. (And, in any case, historians have forcefully argued that what it was to replace was not like feudalism, with or without modificatory adjectives.) But, more fundamentally, the logical structure of endogenous change does not apply here. Here transformation agendas attack as an external force. This externality is not something that can be casually mentioned and forgotten. It is inscribed on every move, every object, every proposal, every legislative act. each line of causality. It comes to be marked on the epoch itself. This repetitive emphasis on externality should not be seen as a nationalist initiative that is so well rehearsed in Indian social science. . . .
Quite apart from the externality of the entire historical proposal of modernity, some of its contents were remarkable. . . Economic reforms, or rather alterations . . . did not foreshadow the construction of a classical capitalist economy, with its necessary emphasis on extractive and transport sectors. What happened was the creation of a degenerate version of capitalism —what early dependency theorists called the ‘development of underdevelopment’.

(2019)

Q. Which one of the following 5-word sequences best captures the flow of the arguments in the passage?

Solution:

If you note carefully some of the logical sequence will be evident while some others may have to be referred back to be found out. Colonial policy is the first stage as is natural or logical. This will be followed by enlightenment (the British colonial state represented the great conquering discourse of Enlightenment rationalism,) and underdevelopment will be the last in the sequence as can be found out from the last sentence of the passage. There is only one option with underdevelopment as the last stage of the sequence. This is option (d) which is the right answer. 

QUESTION: 20

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

For two years, I tracked down dozens of . . . Chinese in upper Egypt [who were] selling lingerie. In a deeply conservative region, where Egyptian families rarely allow women to work or own businesses, the Chinese flourished because of their status as outsiders. They didn’t gossip, and they kept their opinions to themselves. In a New Yorker article entitled “Learning to Speak Lingerie.” I described the Chinese use of Arabic as another non-threatening characteristic. I wrote. “Unlike Mandarin. Arabic is inflected for gender, and Chinese dealers, who learn the language strictly by ear, often pick up speech patterns from female customers. I’ve come to think of it as the lingerie dialect, and there’s something disarming about these Chinese men speaking in the feminine voice.” . . .
When I wrote about the Chinese in the New Yorker, most readers seemed to appreciate the unusual perspective. But as I often find with topics that involve the Middle East, some people had trouble getting past the black-and-white quality of a byline. “This piece is so orientalist I don’t know what to do.” Aisha Gani, a reporter who worked at The Guardian, tweeted. Another colleague at the British paper, Iman Amrani, agreed: “I wouldn’t have minded an article on the subject written by an Egyptian woman—probably would have had better insight.” . . .
As an MOL (man of language). I also take issue with this kind of essentialism. Empathy and understanding are not inherited traits, and they are not strictly tied to gender and race. An individual who wrestles with a difficult language can learn to be more sympathetic to outsiders and open to different experiences of the world. This learning process—the embarrassments, the frustrations, the gradual sense of understanding and connection—is invariably transformative. In Upper Egypt, the Chinese experience of struggling to learn Arabic and local culture had made them much more thoughtful. In the same way. I was interested in their lives not because of some kind of voyeurism, but because I had also experienced Egypt and Arabic as an outsider. And both the Chinese and the Egyptians welcomed me because I spoke their languages. My identity as a white male was far less important than my ability to communicate.
And that easily lobbed word—“Orientalist”—hardly captures the complexity of our interactions. What exactly is the dynamic when a man from Missouri observes a Zhejiang native selling lingerie to an Upper Egyptian woman? . . . If all of us now stand beside the same river, speaking in ways we all understand, who’s looking east and who’s looking west? Which way is Oriental?
For all of our current interest in identity politics, there’s no corresponding sense of identity linguistics. You are what you speak—the words that run throughout your mind are at least as fundamental to your selfhood as is your ethnicity or your gender. And sometimes it’s healthy to consider human characteristics that are not inborn, rigid, and outwardly defined. After all. you can always learn another language and change who you are.

(2019)

Q. A French ethnographer decides to study the culture of a Nigerian tribe. Which of the following is most likely to be the view of the author of the passage?

Solution:

This question can be easily answered if you have grasped the sense of the passage. You may not find it directly anywhere in the passage but you have to grasp the key ideas of the author. The option (a) would be incorrect because the author would never discourage an ethnographer from learning a new language or studying a new culture. Option (b) would also be incorrect because the author has learned the language directly by experiencing the culture. So the author would most likely not recommend a translator.
Option (c) is the right choice because the author would encourage the ethnographer to learn the language as he himself learned the language. Option (d) would be incorrect because author is unmindful of racial and gender identities. In fact, he tries to prove that the word Oriental would not apply to him. Therefore, Option (c) is our right choice.

QUESTION: 21

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

For two years, I tracked down dozens of . . . Chinese in upper Egypt [who were] selling lingerie. In a deeply conservative region, where Egyptian families rarely allow women to work or own businesses, the Chinese flourished because of their status as outsiders. They didn’t gossip, and they kept their opinions to themselves. In a New Yorker article entitled “Learning to Speak Lingerie.” I described the Chinese use of Arabic as another non-threatening characteristic. I wrote. “Unlike Mandarin. Arabic is inflected for gender, and Chinese dealers, who learn the language strictly by ear, often pick up speech patterns from female customers. I’ve come to think of it as the lingerie dialect, and there’s something disarming about these Chinese men speaking in the feminine voice.” . . .
When I wrote about the Chinese in the New Yorker, most readers seemed to appreciate the unusual perspective. But as I often find with topics that involve the Middle East, some people had trouble getting past the black-and-white quality of a byline. “This piece is so orientalist I don’t know what to do.” Aisha Gani, a reporter who worked at The Guardian, tweeted. Another colleague at the British paper, Iman Amrani, agreed: “I wouldn’t have minded an article on the subject written by an Egyptian woman—probably would have had better insight.” . . .
As an MOL (man of language). I also take issue with this kind of essentialism. Empathy and understanding are not inherited traits, and they are not strictly tied to gender and race. An individual who wrestles with a difficult language can learn to be more sympathetic to outsiders and open to different experiences of the world. This learning process—the embarrassments, the frustrations, the gradual sense of understanding and connection—is invariably transformative. In Upper Egypt, the Chinese experience of struggling to learn Arabic and local culture had made them much more thoughtful. In the same way. I was interested in their lives not because of some kind of voyeurism, but because I had also experienced Egypt and Arabic as an outsider. And both the Chinese and the Egyptians welcomed me because I spoke their languages. My identity as a white male was far less important than my ability to communicate.
And that easily lobbed word—“Orientalist”—hardly captures the complexity of our interactions. What exactly is the dynamic when a man from Missouri observes a Zhejiang native selling lingerie to an Upper Egyptian woman? . . . If all of us now stand beside the same river, speaking in ways we all understand, who’s looking east and who’s looking west? Which way is Oriental?
For all of our current interest in identity politics, there’s no corresponding sense of identity linguistics. You are what you speak—the words that run throughout your mind are at least as fundamental to your selfhood as is your ethnicity or your gender. And sometimes it’s healthy to consider human characteristics that are not inborn, rigid, and outwardly defined. After all. you can always learn another language and change who you are.

(2019)

Q. According to the passage, which of the following is not responsible for language’s ability to change us?

Solution:

Read the following sentence from the third last paragraph from the passage to answer this question: “My identity as a white male was far less important than my ability to communicate.” This is close to option (b). Which shows language has the ability to mediate the impact of identity makers one is born with, that is, language can change us.
Option (a)- Language’s intrinsic connection to our notions of self and identity is able to change us. People consider you more favorably when you speak their language. You are welcomed because you speak a particular language shows the language has intrinsic connection with your identity. People welcome you because they identify with you and find you similar to them.
While option (d) is mentioned in the passage, we do not find option (c). Option (d) is about the ups and downs involved in course of learning a language. It is mentioned in the passage in the following words: “This learning process—the embarrassments, the frustrations, the gradual sense of understanding and connection—is invariably transformative.” Therefore, we are left with option (c), which is the right answer.

QUESTION: 22

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

For two years, I tracked down dozens of . . . Chinese in upper Egypt [who were] selling lingerie. In a deeply conservative region, where Egyptian families rarely allow women to work or own businesses, the Chinese flourished because of their status as outsiders. They didn’t gossip, and they kept their opinions to themselves. In a New Yorker article entitled “Learning to Speak Lingerie.” I described the Chinese use of Arabic as another non-threatening characteristic. I wrote. “Unlike Mandarin. Arabic is inflected for gender, and Chinese dealers, who learn the language strictly by ear, often pick up speech patterns from female customers. I’ve come to think of it as the lingerie dialect, and there’s something disarming about these Chinese men speaking in the feminine voice.” . . .
When I wrote about the Chinese in the New Yorker, most readers seemed to appreciate the unusual perspective. But as I often find with topics that involve the Middle East, some people had trouble getting past the black-and-white quality of a byline. “This piece is so orientalist I don’t know what to do.” Aisha Gani, a reporter who worked at The Guardian, tweeted. Another colleague at the British paper, Iman Amrani, agreed: “I wouldn’t have minded an article on the subject written by an Egyptian woman—probably would have had better insight.” . . .
As an MOL (man of language). I also take issue with this kind of essentialism. Empathy and understanding are not inherited traits, and they are not strictly tied to gender and race. An individual who wrestles with a difficult language can learn to be more sympathetic to outsiders and open to different experiences of the world. This learning process—the embarrassments, the frustrations, the gradual sense of understanding and connection—is invariably transformative. In Upper Egypt, the Chinese experience of struggling to learn Arabic and local culture had made them much more thoughtful. In the same way. I was interested in their lives not because of some kind of voyeurism, but because I had also experienced Egypt and Arabic as an outsider. And both the Chinese and the Egyptians welcomed me because I spoke their languages. My identity as a white male was far less important than my ability to communicate.
And that easily lobbed word—“Orientalist”—hardly captures the complexity of our interactions. What exactly is the dynamic when a man from Missouri observes a Zhejiang native selling lingerie to an Upper Egyptian woman? . . . If all of us now stand beside the same river, speaking in ways we all understand, who’s looking east and who’s looking west? Which way is Oriental?
For all of our current interest in identity politics, there’s no corresponding sense of identity linguistics. You are what you speak—the words that run throughout your mind are at least as fundamental to your selfhood as is your ethnicity or your gender. And sometimes it’s healthy to consider human characteristics that are not inborn, rigid, and outwardly defined. After all. you can always learn another language and change who you are.

(2019)

Q. Which of the following can be inferred from the author’s claim, “Which way is Oriental?”

Solution:

“Which way is oriental?” occurs in the second last paragraph. When you read the entire paragraph and the entire passage, you will understand the context in which this question is raised. Here is the paragraph: And that easily lobbed word—“Orientalist”—hardly captures the complexity of our interactions. What exactly is the dynamic when a man from Missouri observes a Zhejiang native selling lingerie to an Upper Egyptian woman?  . . . If all of us now stand beside the same river, speaking in ways we all understand, who’s looking east and who’s looking west? Which way is Oriental?
The word Oriental means western. The readers are objecting to an Oriental writer writing on the Chinese women using the Middle East language. The author responds that it is not the question of Oriental as we share the same identity. According to the author we share the same cultural space, speak the same language and understand each other. Thus language breaks the barrier of cultural identity according to the author.
Option (b) also claims the same thing. It says learning another language can mitigate cultural hierarchies and barriers. None of the other options are correct because neither goodwill nor globalization relate to what the author claims. Therefore, option (b) is correct.

QUESTION: 23

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

For two years, I tracked down dozens of . . . Chinese in upper Egypt [who were] selling lingerie. In a deeply conservative region, where Egyptian families rarely allow women to work or own businesses, the Chinese flourished because of their status as outsiders. They didn’t gossip, and they kept their opinions to themselves. In a New Yorker article entitled “Learning to Speak Lingerie.” I described the Chinese use of Arabic as another non-threatening characteristic. I wrote. “Unlike Mandarin. Arabic is inflected for gender, and Chinese dealers, who learn the language strictly by ear, often pick up speech patterns from female customers. I’ve come to think of it as the lingerie dialect, and there’s something disarming about these Chinese men speaking in the feminine voice.” . . .
When I wrote about the Chinese in the New Yorker, most readers seemed to appreciate the unusual perspective. But as I often find with topics that involve the Middle East, some people had trouble getting past the black-and-white quality of a byline. “This piece is so orientalist I don’t know what to do.” Aisha Gani, a reporter who worked at The Guardian, tweeted. Another colleague at the British paper, Iman Amrani, agreed: “I wouldn’t have minded an article on the subject written by an Egyptian woman—probably would have had better insight.” . . .
As an MOL (man of language). I also take issue with this kind of essentialism. Empathy and understanding are not inherited traits, and they are not strictly tied to gender and race. An individual who wrestles with a difficult language can learn to be more sympathetic to outsiders and open to different experiences of the world. This learning process—the embarrassments, the frustrations, the gradual sense of understanding and connection—is invariably transformative. In Upper Egypt, the Chinese experience of struggling to learn Arabic and local culture had made them much more thoughtful. In the same way. I was interested in their lives not because of some kind of voyeurism, but because I had also experienced Egypt and Arabic as an outsider. And both the Chinese and the Egyptians welcomed me because I spoke their languages. My identity as a white male was far less important than my ability to communicate.
And that easily lobbed word—“Orientalist”—hardly captures the complexity of our interactions. What exactly is the dynamic when a man from Missouri observes a Zhejiang native selling lingerie to an Upper Egyptian woman? . . . If all of us now stand beside the same river, speaking in ways we all understand, who’s looking east and who’s looking west? Which way is Oriental?
For all of our current interest in identity politics, there’s no corresponding sense of identity linguistics. You are what you speak—the words that run throughout your mind are at least as fundamental to your selfhood as is your ethnicity or your gender. And sometimes it’s healthy to consider human characteristics that are not inborn, rigid, and outwardly defined. After all. you can always learn another language and change who you are.

(2019)

Q. The author’s critics would argue that:

Solution:

If you can understand the authors view point, you can guess the view point of the critic. You may not find the answer directly in the passage. The key point that author seems to be making is that language can overcome cultural barriers and the barriers of identity that we are born with. Author’s critics would make a view opposed to this. Option (a) linguistics politics can be erased is something that author also claims directly or indirectly. So this option is incorrect. Option (b) is empathy can overcome identity politics is the point of view of the author because author claims that learning the language of other culture makes the others empathetic to you. Option (c) is the claim opposed to the author’s point of view because author claims that language is sufficient to bridge cultural gaps. So option (c) is the correct choice.
Option (d) is a deviation from the main topic. Author does not claim or disclaim orientalism can or cannot be practiced by the Egyptians. So we have to reject this option.

QUESTION: 24

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Around the world, capital cities are disgorging bureaucrats. In the post-colonial fervour of the 20th century, coastal capitals picked by trade-focused empires were spurned for “regionally neutral” new ones .... But decamping wholesale is costly and unpopular: governments these days prefer piecemeal dispersal. The trend reflects how the world has changed. In past eras, when information travelled at a snail’s pace, civil servants had to cluster together. But now desk-workers can ping emails and video-chat around the world. Travel for face-to-face meetings may be unavoidable, but transport links, too. have improved. . . .
Proponents of moving civil servants around promise countless benefits. It disperses the risk that a terrorist attack or natural disaster will cripple an entire government. Wonks in the sticks will be inspired by new ideas that walled-off capitals cannot conjure up. Autonomous regulators perform best far from the pressure and lobbying of the big city. Some even hail a cure for ascendant cynicism and populism. The unloved bureaucrats of faraway capitals will become as popular as firefighters once they mix with regular folk.
Beyond these sunny visions, dispersing central-government functions usually has three specific aims: to improve the lives of both civil servants and those living in clogged capitals; to save money; and to redress regional imbalances. The trouble is that these goals are not always realised.
The first aim—improving living conditions—has a long pedigree. After the second world war Britain moved thousands of civil servants to “agreeable English country towns” as London was rebuilt. But swapping the capital for somewhere smaller is not always agreeable. Attrition rates can exceed 80%. . . . The second reason to pack bureaucrats off is to save money. Office space costs far more in capitals. . . . Agencies that are moved elsewhere can often recruit better workers on lower salaries than in capitals, where well-paying multinationals mop up talent.
The third reason to shift is to rebalance regional inequality. . . . Norway treats federal jobs as a resource every region deserves to enjoy, like profits from oil. Where government jobs go. private ones follow. . . . Sometimes the aim is to fulfil the potential of a country’s second-tier cities. Unlike poor, remote places, bigger cities can make the most of relocated government agencies, linking them to local universities and businesses and supplying a better-educated workforce. The decision in 1946 to set up America’s Centres for Disease Control in Atlanta rather than Washington, D.C., has transformed the city into a hub for health-sector research and business.
The dilemma is obvious. Pick small, poor towns, and areas of high unemployment get new jobs, but it is hard to attract the most qualified workers: opt for larger cities with infrastructure and better-qualified residents, and the country’s most deprived areas see little benefit. . . . Others contend that decentralisation begets corruption by making government agencies less accountable. . . . A study in America found that state-government corruption is worse when the state capital is isolated—journalists, who tend to live in the bigger cities, become less watchful of those in power.

(2019)

Q. The “long pedigree” of the aim to shift civil servants to improve their living standards implies that this move:

Solution:

The aim of this ques tion is to test whether you understand the meaning of “long pedigree”. This phrase in simple terms means long history. So you can reframe the question as: What do you mean by the long pedigree of the aim to shift civil servants to improve their living standards? Its meaning is best brought out by option (d): “it is not a new idea and has been tried in the past”. So option (d) is the correct choice.

QUESTION: 25

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Around the world, capital cities are disgorging bureaucrats. In the post-colonial fervour of the 20th century, coastal capitals picked by trade-focused empires were spurned for “regionally neutral” new ones .... But decamping wholesale is costly and unpopular: governments these days prefer piecemeal dispersal. The trend reflects how the world has changed. In past eras, when information travelled at a snail’s pace, civil servants had to cluster together. But now desk-workers can ping emails and video-chat around the world. Travel for face-to-face meetings may be unavoidable, but transport links, too. have improved. . . .
Proponents of moving civil servants around promise countless benefits. It disperses the risk that a terrorist attack or natural disaster will cripple an entire government. Wonks in the sticks will be inspired by new ideas that walled-off capitals cannot conjure up. Autonomous regulators perform best far from the pressure and lobbying of the big city. Some even hail a cure for ascendant cynicism and populism. The unloved bureaucrats of faraway capitals will become as popular as firefighters once they mix with regular folk.
Beyond these sunny visions, dispersing central-government functions usually has three specific aims: to improve the lives of both civil servants and those living in clogged capitals; to save money; and to redress regional imbalances. The trouble is that these goals are not always realised.
The first aim—improving living conditions—has a long pedigree. After the second world war Britain moved thousands of civil servants to “agreeable English country towns” as London was rebuilt. But swapping the capital for somewhere smaller is not always agreeable. Attrition rates can exceed 80%. . . . The second reason to pack bureaucrats off is to save money. Office space costs far more in capitals. . . . Agencies that are moved elsewhere can often recruit better workers on lower salaries than in capitals, where well-paying multinationals mop up talent.
The third reason to shift is to rebalance regional inequality. . . . Norway treats federal jobs as a resource every region deserves to enjoy, like profits from oil. Where government jobs go. private ones follow. . . . Sometimes the aim is to fulfil the potential of a country’s second-tier cities. Unlike poor, remote places, bigger cities can make the most of relocated government agencies, linking them to local universities and businesses and supplying a better-educated workforce. The decision in 1946 to set up America’s Centres for Disease Control in Atlanta rather than Washington, D.C., has transformed the city into a hub for health-sector research and business.
The dilemma is obvious. Pick small, poor towns, and areas of high unemployment get new jobs, but it is hard to attract the most qualified workers: opt for larger cities with infrastructure and better-qualified residents, and the country’s most deprived areas see little benefit. . . . Others contend that decentralisation begets corruption by making government agencies less accountable. . . . A study in America found that state-government corruption is worse when the state capital is isolated—journalists, who tend to live in the bigger cities, become less watchful of those in power.

(2019)

Q. The “dilemma” mentioned in the passage refers to:

Solution:

Read the following in the last paragraph of the passage: “The dilemma is obvious. Pick small, poor towns, and areas of high unemployment get new jobs, but it is hard to attract the most qualified workers; opt for larger cities with infrastructure and better-qualified residents, and the country’s most deprived areas see little benefit. . . .” The dilemma is clear and obvious. Now let us see the options. Options (a) and (b) are almost similar and close to the sense brought out in the passage. Option (c) is clearly not correct. It speaks about boosting employment in larger cities which is not discussed in the passage. Similarly, option (d) talks about relocation of private enterprises and hence it can be rejected.
Between option (a) and (b), option (a) is better because it speaks about boosting growth in smaller areas while this is missing in option (b). Therefore, option (a) is the correct choice.

QUESTION: 26

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Around the world, capital cities are disgorging bureaucrats. In the post-colonial fervour of the 20th century, coastal capitals picked by trade-focused empires were spurned for “regionally neutral” new ones .... But decamping wholesale is costly and unpopular: governments these days prefer piecemeal dispersal. The trend reflects how the world has changed. In past eras, when information travelled at a snail’s pace, civil servants had to cluster together. But now desk-workers can ping emails and video-chat around the world. Travel for face-to-face meetings may be unavoidable, but transport links, too. have improved. . . .
Proponents of moving civil servants around promise countless benefits. It disperses the risk that a terrorist attack or natural disaster will cripple an entire government. Wonks in the sticks will be inspired by new ideas that walled-off capitals cannot conjure up. Autonomous regulators perform best far from the pressure and lobbying of the big city. Some even hail a cure for ascendant cynicism and populism. The unloved bureaucrats of faraway capitals will become as popular as firefighters once they mix with regular folk.
Beyond these sunny visions, dispersing central-government functions usually has three specific aims: to improve the lives of both civil servants and those living in clogged capitals; to save money; and to redress regional imbalances. The trouble is that these goals are not always realised.
The first aim—improving living conditions—has a long pedigree. After the second world war Britain moved thousands of civil servants to “agreeable English country towns” as London was rebuilt. But swapping the capital for somewhere smaller is not always agreeable. Attrition rates can exceed 80%. . . . The second reason to pack bureaucrats off is to save money. Office space costs far more in capitals. . . . Agencies that are moved elsewhere can often recruit better workers on lower salaries than in capitals, where well-paying multinationals mop up talent.
The third reason to shift is to rebalance regional inequality. . . . Norway treats federal jobs as a resource every region deserves to enjoy, like profits from oil. Where government jobs go. private ones follow. . . . Sometimes the aim is to fulfil the potential of a country’s second-tier cities. Unlike poor, remote places, bigger cities can make the most of relocated government agencies, linking them to local universities and businesses and supplying a better-educated workforce. The decision in 1946 to set up America’s Centres for Disease Control in Atlanta rather than Washington, D.C., has transformed the city into a hub for health-sector research and business.
The dilemma is obvious. Pick small, poor towns, and areas of high unemployment get new jobs, but it is hard to attract the most qualified workers: opt for larger cities with infrastructure and better-qualified residents, and the country’s most deprived areas see little benefit. . . . Others contend that decentralisation begets corruption by making government agencies less accountable. . . . A study in America found that state-government corruption is worse when the state capital is isolated—journalists, who tend to live in the bigger cities, become less watchful of those in power.

(2019)

Q. People who support decentralising central government functions are LEAST likely to cite which of the following reasons for their view?

Solution:

In the given question certain reasons that support decentralization of central government functions are given. These are the reasons that people make for decentralization. Your task is to identify the least likely reason that people give or the least likely reason. So the options that support decentralization can be rejected. Option (a) supports decentralization as discussed in the passage. The author extensively discusses the cost factor. Therefore, this option is rejected. Options (b) and (c) are also rejected. If you read the second paragraph carefully, you will find these arguments. Fresh thinking or new ideas and autonomy in regulations have been extensively discussed in the passage.
We do not find option (d) discussed anywhere in the passage. Therefore, it is the right option.

QUESTION: 27

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Around the world, capital cities are disgorging bureaucrats. In the post-colonial fervour of the 20th century, coastal capitals picked by trade-focused empires were spurned for “regionally neutral” new ones .... But decamping wholesale is costly and unpopular: governments these days prefer piecemeal dispersal. The trend reflects how the world has changed. In past eras, when information travelled at a snail’s pace, civil servants had to cluster together. But now desk-workers can ping emails and video-chat around the world. Travel for face-to-face meetings may be unavoidable, but transport links, too. have improved. . . .
Proponents of moving civil servants around promise countless benefits. It disperses the risk that a terrorist attack or natural disaster will cripple an entire government. Wonks in the sticks will be inspired by new ideas that walled-off capitals cannot conjure up. Autonomous regulators perform best far from the pressure and lobbying of the big city. Some even hail a cure for ascendant cynicism and populism. The unloved bureaucrats of faraway capitals will become as popular as firefighters once they mix with regular folk.
Beyond these sunny visions, dispersing central-government functions usually has three specific aims: to improve the lives of both civil servants and those living in clogged capitals; to save money; and to redress regional imbalances. The trouble is that these goals are not always realised.
The first aim—improving living conditions—has a long pedigree. After the second world war Britain moved thousands of civil servants to “agreeable English country towns” as London was rebuilt. But swapping the capital for somewhere smaller is not always agreeable. Attrition rates can exceed 80%. . . . The second reason to pack bureaucrats off is to save money. Office space costs far more in capitals. . . . Agencies that are moved elsewhere can often recruit better workers on lower salaries than in capitals, where well-paying multinationals mop up talent.
The third reason to shift is to rebalance regional inequality. . . . Norway treats federal jobs as a resource every region deserves to enjoy, like profits from oil. Where government jobs go. private ones follow. . . . Sometimes the aim is to fulfil the potential of a country’s second-tier cities. Unlike poor, remote places, bigger cities can make the most of relocated government agencies, linking them to local universities and businesses and supplying a better-educated workforce. The decision in 1946 to set up America’s Centres for Disease Control in Atlanta rather than Washington, D.C., has transformed the city into a hub for health-sector research and business.
The dilemma is obvious. Pick small, poor towns, and areas of high unemployment get new jobs, but it is hard to attract the most qualified workers: opt for larger cities with infrastructure and better-qualified residents, and the country’s most deprived areas see little benefit. . . . Others contend that decentralisation begets corruption by making government agencies less accountable. . . . A study in America found that state-government corruption is worse when the state capital is isolated—journalists, who tend to live in the bigger cities, become less watchful of those in power.

(2019)

Q. According to the passage, colonial powers located their capitals:

Solution:

The answer may be found in the first paragraph. The question is “colonial powers located their capitals” while the passage mostly talks about relocation of bureaucrats in the post-colonial era. The first sentence of the first paragraph reads as follows: “Around the world, capital cities are disgorging bureaucrats. In the post-colonial fervour of the 20th century, coastal capitals picked by trade-focused empires were spurned for “regionally neutral” new ones .” Read the second sentence above: It is “In the post-colonial fervour of the 20th century, coastal capitals picked by trade-focused empires were spurned”. It means costal capitals picked by trade focused empires were spurned in the post-colonial era.
Trade focused empires were the colonial empires with largely trade interests. In other words, the colonial powers located their capitals to promote their trading interests. This is the second option. Therefore option (b) is correct.

QUESTION: 28

DIRECTIONS: Read the passage and answer the questions based on it.

Around the world, capital cities are disgorging bureaucrats. In the post-colonial fervour of the 20th century, coastal capitals picked by trade-focused empires were spurned for “regionally neutral” new ones .... But decamping wholesale is costly and unpopular: governments these days prefer piecemeal dispersal. The trend reflects how the world has changed. In past eras, when information travelled at a snail’s pace, civil servants had to cluster together. But now desk-workers can ping emails and video-chat around the world. Travel for face-to-face meetings may be unavoidable, but transport links, too. have improved. . . .
Proponents of moving civil servants around promise countless benefits. It disperses the risk that a terrorist attack or natural disaster will cripple an entire government. Wonks in the sticks will be inspired by new ideas that walled-off capitals cannot conjure up. Autonomous regulators perform best far from the pressure and lobbying of the big city. Some even hail a cure for ascendant cynicism and populism. The unloved bureaucrats of faraway capitals will become as popular as firefighters once they mix with regular folk.
Beyond these sunny visions, dispersing central-government functions usually has three specific aims: to improve the lives of both civil servants and those living in clogged capitals; to save money; and to redress regional imbalances. The trouble is that these goals are not always realised.
The first aim—improving living conditions—has a long pedigree. After the second world war Britain moved thousands of civil servants to “agreeable English country towns” as London was rebuilt. But swapping the capital for somewhere smaller is not always agreeable. Attrition rates can exceed 80%. . . . The second reason to pack bureaucrats off is to save money. Office space costs far more in capitals. . . . Agencies that are moved elsewhere can often recruit better workers on lower salaries than in capitals, where well-paying multinationals mop up talent.
The third reason to shift is to rebalance regional inequality. . . . Norway treats federal jobs as a resource every region deserves to enjoy, like profits from oil. Where government jobs go. private ones follow. . . . Sometimes the aim is to fulfil the potential of a country’s second-tier cities. Unlike poor, remote places, bigger cities can make the most of relocated government agencies, linking them to local universities and businesses and supplying a better-educated workforce. The decision in 1946 to set up America’s Centres for Disease Control in Atlanta rather than Washington, D.C., has transformed the city into a hub for health-sector research and business.
The dilemma is obvious. Pick small, poor towns, and areas of high unemployment get new jobs, but it is hard to attract the most qualified workers: opt for larger cities with infrastructure and better-qualified residents, and the country’s most deprived areas see little benefit. . . . Others contend that decentralisation begets corruption by making government agencies less accountable. . . . A study in America found that state-government corruption is worse when the state capital is isolated—journalists, who tend to live in the bigger cities, become less watchful of those in power.

(2019)

Q. According to the author, relocating government agencies has not always been a success for all of the following reasons EXCEPT:

Solution:

If you read the passage even once, you will note that pollution levels and congestions have not been mentioned even once in the passage. In fact, when government agencies relocate to a new place from the capital city, it is usually a smaller place which is not as polluted and congested as the big cities like the capital cities. So option (d) is the obvious choice because it is not a reason that explains why relocating government agencies have not been a success. Therefore, option 4 is the right choice.

QUESTION: 29

Directions for Questions: The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Understanding where you are in the world is a basic survival skill, which is why we, like most species come hard- wired with specialised brain areas to create cognitive maps of our surroundings. Where humans are unique, though, with the possible exception of honeybees, is that we try to communicate this understanding of the world with others. We have a long history of doing this by drawing maps- the earliest versions yet discovered were scrawled on cave walls 14,000 years ago. Human cultures have been drawing them on stone tablets, papyrus, paper and now computer screens ever since.
Given such a long history of human map–making, it is perhaps surprising that it is only within the last few hundred years that north has been consistently considered to be at the top. In fact, for much of human history, north almost never appeared at the top, according to Jerry Brotton, a map historian... “North was rarely put at the top for the simple fact that north is where darkness comes from,” he says. “West is also very unlikely to be put at the top because west is where the sun disappears.” Confusingly, early Chinese maps seem to buck this trend. But, Brotton, says, even though they did have compasses at the time, that isn’t the reason that they placed north at the top. Early Chinese compasses were actually oriented to point south, which was considered to be more desirable than deepest darkest north. But in Chinese maps, the Emperor, who lived in the north of the country was always put at the top of the map, with everyone else, his loyal subjects, looking up towards him. “In Chinese culture the Emperor looks south because it’s where the winds come from, it’s a good direction. North  is not very good but you are in a position of subjection to the emperor, so you  look up to him,” says Brotton.
Given that each culture has a very different idea of who, or what, they should look up to it’s perhaps not surprising that there is very little consistency in which way early maps pointed. In ancient Egyptian times the top of the world was east, the position of sunrise.
Early Islamic maps favoured south at the top because most of the early Muslim cultures were north of Mecca, so they imagined looking up (south) towards it. Christian maps from the same era (called Mappa Mundi) put  east at the top, towards the Garden of Eden and with Jerusalem in the centre.
So when did everyone get together and decide that north was the top? It’s tempting to put it down to European explorers like Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Megellan, who were navigating by the North Star. But Brotton argues that these early explorers didn’t think of the world like that at all. “When Columbus describes the world it is in accordance with east being at the top,” he says. “Columbus says he is going towards paradise, so his mentality is from a medieval mappa mundi.” We’ve got to remember, adds Brotton, the at the time. “no one knows what they are doing and where they are going.”

(2017)

Q. Which one of the following best describes what the passage is trying to do?

Solution:

The starting part of the passage talks about the history of map making. It is then mentioned how North being considered a bad direction was never put at the top in ancient times. Putting North at the top is a fairly recent phenomenon. It is further discussed about the reasons for putting North on the top and how the reasons of different people putting North at the top were different than that of the opinion of people today. So, it can be concluded by saying that the passage is focusing on clearing the misconception behind North being put at the top in the maps.

QUESTION: 30

Directions for Questions: The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Understanding where you are in the world is a basic survival skill, which is why we, like most species come hard- wired with specialised brain areas to create cognitive maps of our surroundings. Where humans are unique, though, with the possible exception of honeybees, is that we try to communicate this understanding of the world with others. We have a long history of doing this by drawing maps- the earliest versions yet discovered were scrawled on cave walls 14,000 years ago. Human cultures have been drawing them on stone tablets, papyrus, paper and now computer screens ever since.
Given such a long history of human map–making, it is perhaps surprising that it is only within the last few hundred years that north has been consistently considered to be at the top. In fact, for much of human history, north almost never appeared at the top, according to Jerry Brotton, a map historian... “North was rarely put at the top for the simple fact that north is where darkness comes from,” he says. “West is also very unlikely to be put at the top because west is where the sun disappears.” Confusingly, early Chinese maps seem to buck this trend. But, Brotton, says, even though they did have compasses at the time, that isn’t the reason that they placed north at the top. Early Chinese compasses were actually oriented to point south, which was considered to be more desirable than deepest darkest north. But in Chinese maps, the Emperor, who lived in the north of the country was always put at the top of the map, with everyone else, his loyal subjects, looking up towards him. “In Chinese culture the Emperor looks south because it’s where the winds come from, it’s a good direction. North  is not very good but you are in a position of subjection to the emperor, so you  look up to him,” says Brotton.
Given that each culture has a very different idea of who, or what, they should look up to it’s perhaps not surprising that there is very little consistency in which way early maps pointed. In ancient Egyptian times the top of the world was east, the position of sunrise.
Early Islamic maps favoured south at the  top because most of the early Muslim cultures were north of Mecca, so they imagined looking up (south) towards it. Christian maps from the same era (called Mappa Mundi) put  east at the top, towards the Garden of Eden and with Jerusalem in the centre.
So when did everyone get together and decide that north was the top? It’s tempting to put it down to European explorers like Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Megellan, who were navigating by the North Star. But Brotton argues that these early explorers didn’t think of the world like that at all. “When Columbus describes the world it is in accordance with east being at the top,” he says. “Columbus says he is going towards paradise, so his mentality is from a medieval mappa mundi.” We’ve got to remember, adds Brotton, the at the time. “no one knows what they are doing and where they are going.”

(2017)

Q. Early maps did NOT north at the top for all the following reasons EXCEPT

Solution:

It is clearly mentioned in the passage that Chinese emperors who lived in the North was always put at the top of the map with everyone else looking towards him.

QUESTION: 31

Directions for Questions: The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Understanding where you are in the world is a basic survival skill, which is why we, like most species come hard- wired with specialised brain areas to create cognitive maps of our surroundings. Where humans are unique, though, with the possible exception of honeybees, is that we try to communicate this understanding of the world with others. We have a long history of doing this by drawing maps- the earliest versions yet discovered were scrawled on cave walls 14,000 years ago. Human cultures have been drawing them on stone tablets, papyrus, paper and now computer screens ever since.
Given such a long history of human map–making, it is perhaps surprising that it is only within the last few hundred years that north has been consistently considered to be at the top. In fact, for much of human history, north almost never appeared at the top, according to Jerry Brotton, a map historian... “North was rarely put at the top for the simple fact that north is where darkness comes from,” he says. “West is also very unlikely to be put at the top because west is where the sun disappears.” Confusingly, early Chinese maps seem to buck this trend. But, Brotton, says, even though they did have compasses at the time, that isn’t the reason that they placed north at the top. Early Chinese compasses were actually oriented to point south, which was considered to be more desirable than deepest darkest north. But in Chinese maps, the Emperor, who lived in the north of the country was always put at the top of the map, with everyone else, his loyal subjects, looking up towards him. “In Chinese culture the Emperor looks south because it’s where the winds come from, it’s a good direction. North  is not very good but you are in a position of subjection to the emperor, so you  look up to him,” says Brotton.
Given that each culture has a very different idea of who, or what, they should look up to it’s perhaps not surprising that there is very little consistency in which way early maps pointed. In ancient Egyptian times the top of the world was east, the position of sunrise.
Early Islamic maps favoured south at the  top because most of the early Muslim cultures were north of Mecca, so they imagined looking up (south) towards it. Christian maps from the same era (called Mappa Mundi) put  east at the top, towards the Garden of Eden and with Jerusalem in the centre.
So when did everyone get together and decide that north was the top? It’s tempting to put it down to European explorers like Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Megellan, who were navigating by the North Star. But Brotton argues that these early explorers didn’t think of the world like that at all. “When Columbus describes the world it is in accordance with east being at the top,” he says. “Columbus says he is going towards paradise, so his mentality is from a medieval mappa mundi.” We’ve got to remember, adds Brotton, the at the time. “no one knows what they are doing and where they are going.”

(2017)

Q. According to the passage, early chinese maps placed north at the top because

Solution:

Options A and D can straightaway be eliminated. It is stated in the passage that Chinese compasses pointed towards magnetic South and South was considered a more desirable direction. On the other hand, option C is true i.e. not the reason behind putting North at the top. It is also mentioned in the passage that since the emperor lived in the North direction, maps depicted him above his subjects. Therefore, North was placed at the top to show respect to the emperor.

QUESTION: 32

Directions for Questions: The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Understanding where you are in the world is a basic survival skill, which is why we, like most species come hard- wired with specialised brain areas to create cognitive maps of our surroundings. Where humans are unique, though, with the possible exception of honeybees, is that we try to communicate this understanding of the world with others. We have a long history of doing this by drawing maps- the earliest versions yet discovered were scrawled on cave walls 14,000 years ago. Human cultures have been drawing them on stone tablets, papyrus, paper and now computer screens ever since.
Given such a long history of human map–making, it is perhaps surprising that it is only within the last few hundred years that north has been consistently considered to be at the top. In fact, for much of human history, north almost never appeared at the top, according to Jerry Brotton, a map historian... “North was rarely put at the top for the simple fact that north is where darkness comes from,” he says. “West is also very unlikely to be put at the top because west is where the sun disappears.” Confusingly, early Chinese maps seem to buck this trend. But, Brotton, says, even though they did have compasses at the time, that isn’t the reason that they placed north at the top. Early Chinese compasses were actually oriented to point south, which was considered to be more desirable than deepest darkest north. But in Chinese maps, the Emperor, who lived in the north of the country was always put at the top of the map, with everyone else, his loyal subjects, looking up towards him. “In Chinese culture the Emperor looks south because it’s where the winds come from, it’s a good direction. North  is not very good but you are in a position of subjection to the emperor, so you  look up to him,” says Brotton.
Given that each culture has a very different idea of who, or what, they should look up to it’s perhaps not surprising that there is very little consistency in which way early maps pointed. In ancient Egyptian times the top of the world was east, the position of sunrise.
Early Islamic maps favoured south at the  top because most of the early Muslim cultures were north of Mecca, so they imagined looking up (south) towards it. Christian maps from the same era (called Mappa Mundi) put  east at the top, towards the Garden of Eden and with Jerusalem in the centre.
So when did everyone get together and decide that north was the top? It’s tempting to put it down to European explorers like Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Megellan, who were navigating by the North Star. But Brotton argues that these early explorers didn’t think of the world like that at all. “When Columbus describes the world it is in accordance with east being at the top,” he says. “Columbus says he is going towards paradise, so his mentality is from a medieval mappa mundi.” We’ve got to remember, adds Brotton, the at the time. “no one knows what they are doing and where they are going.”

(2017)

Q. It can be inferred from the passage that European explorers like Columbus and Magellan.

Solution:

Option A can straightaway be eliminated. The author states that though one might think that the trend of putting North at the top was set by these explorers; however, this is not true. Both options B and D are incorrect. It is stated in the passage that the explorers used to navigate with the help of the North Star. It is said in the passage that when Columbus describes the world it is in accordance with East being at the top, he says "Columbus says he is going towards paradise, so his mentality is from a medieval mappa mundi." Hence, it can be inferred that statement C holds true.

QUESTION: 33

Directions for Questions: The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Understanding where you are in the world is a basic survival skill, which is why we, like most species come hard- wired with specialised brain areas to create cognitive maps of our surroundings. Where humans are unique, though, with the possible exception of honeybees, is that we try to communicate this understanding of the world with others. We have a long history of doing this by drawing maps- the earliest versions yet discovered were scrawled on cave walls 14,000 years ago. Human cultures have been drawing them on stone tablets, papyrus, paper and now computer screens ever since.
Given such a long history of human map–making, it is perhaps surprising that it is only within the last few hundred years that north has been consistently considered to be at the top. In fact, for much of human history, north almost never appeared at the top, according to Jerry Brotton, a map historian... “North was rarely put at the top for the simple fact that north is where darkness comes from,” he says. “West is also very unlikely to be put at the top because west is where the sun disappears.” Confusingly, early Chinese maps seem to buck this trend. But, Brotton, says, even though they did have compasses at the time, that isn’t the reason that they placed north at the top. Early Chinese compasses were actually oriented to point south, which was considered to be more desirable than deepest darkest north. But in Chinese maps, the Emperor, who lived in the north of the country was always put at the top of the map, with everyone else, his loyal subjects, looking up towards him. “In Chinese culture the Emperor looks south because it’s where the winds come from, it’s a good direction. North  is not very good but you are in a position of subjection to the emperor, so you  look up to him,” says Brotton.
Given that each culture has a very different idea of who, or what, they should look up to it’s perhaps not surprising that there is very little consistency in which way early maps pointed. In ancient Egyptian times the top of the world was east, the position of sunrise.
Early Islamic maps favoured south at the  top because most of the early Muslim cultures were north of Mecca, so they imagined looking up (south) towards it. Christian maps from the same era (called Mappa Mundi) put  east at the top, towards the Garden of Eden and with Jerusalem in the centre.
So when did everyone get together and decide that north was the top? It’s tempting to put it down to European explorers like Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Megellan, who were navigating by the North Star. But Brotton argues that these early explorers didn’t think of the world like that at all. “When Columbus describes the world it is in accordance with east being at the top,” he says. “Columbus says he is going towards paradise, so his mentality is from a medieval mappa mundi.” We’ve got to remember, adds Brotton, the at the time. “no one knows what they are doing and where they are going.”

(2017)

Q. Which one of the following about the northern orientation of modern maps is asserted in the passage?

Solution:

It is discussed in the passage how in the early maps, North was traditionally not put on the top. The author clearly proves the role of the compass and European explorers in placing North at the top of maps as wrong.
So, option A and B gets eliminated. The author further says that East was placed at the top of Christian maps thus, option C is incorrect. The author contradicts all known explanations behind putting North on the top but does not give any explanation of his own.

QUESTION: 34

Directions for Questions: The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.
PASSAGE

Understanding where you are in the world is a basic survival skill, which is why we, like most species come hard- wired with specialised brain areas to create cognitive maps of our surroundings. Where humans are unique, though, with the possible exception of honeybees, is that we try to communicate this understanding of the world with others. We have a long history of doing this by drawing maps- the earliest versions yet discovered were scrawled on cave walls 14,000 years ago. Human cultures have been drawing them on stone tablets, papyrus, paper and now computer screens ever since.
Given such a long history of human map–making, it is perhaps surprising that it is only within the last few hundred years that north has been consistently considered to be at the top. In fact, for much of human history, north almost never appeared at the top, according to Jerry Brotton, a map historian... “North was rarely put at the top for the simple fact that north is where darkness comes from,” he says. “West is also very unlikely to be put at the top because west is where the sun disappears.” Confusingly, early Chinese maps seem to buck this trend. But, Brotton, says, even though they did have compasses at the time, that isn’t the reason that they placed north at the top. Early Chinese compasses were actually oriented to point south, which was considered to be more desirable than deepest darkest north. But in Chinese maps, the Emperor, who lived in the north of the country was always put at the top of the map, with everyone else, his loyal subjects, looking up towards him. “In Chinese culture the Emperor looks south because it’s where the winds come from, it’s a good direction. North  is not very good but you are in a position of subjection to the emperor, so you  look up to him,” says Brotton.
Given that each culture has a very different idea of who, or what, they should look up to it’s perhaps not surprising that there is very little consistency in which way early maps pointed. In ancient Egyptian times the top of the world was east, the position of sunrise.
Early Islamic maps favoured south at the  top because most of the early Muslim cultures were north of Mecca, so they imagined looking up (south) towards it. Christian maps from the same era (called Mappa Mundi) put  east at the top, towards the Garden of Eden and with Jerusalem in the centre.
So when did everyone get together and decide that north was the top? It’s tempting to put it down to European explorers like Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Megellan, who were navigating by the North Star. But Brotton argues that these early explorers didn’t think of the world like that at all. “When Columbus describes the world it is in accordance with east being at the top,” he says. “Columbus says he is going towards paradise, so his mentality is from a medieval mappa mundi.” We’ve got to remember, adds Brotton, the at the time. “no one knows what they are doing and where they are going.”

(2017)

Q. The role of natural phenomena in influencing map-making conventions is seen most clearly in

Solution:

In the passage, it is stated that early Egyptian maps placed East on the top as it was the position of sunrise.
Hence, it can be asserted that natural phenomena dictated the map-making convention. Therefore, option A is correct. Option B and D are wrong because mapmaking conventions were decided by religious factors and not natural phenomena. Option C also gets eliminated on the premise that the orientation was a result of their desire to honour their emperor.

QUESTION: 35

Directions for Questions: Read the following passage and answer the questions the follow it.
PASSAGE

Humans have a basic need to perceive themselves as part of a grand scheme, of a natural order that has a deeper significance and greater endurance than the petty affairs of daily life. The incongruous mismatch between the futility of the human condition and the brooding majesty of the cosmos compels people to seek a transcendent meaning to underpin their fragile existence.
For thousands of years this broader context was provided by tribal mythology and storytelling. The transporting qualities of those narratives gave human beings a crucial spiritual anchor. All cultures lay claim to haunting myths of other-worldliness: from the dreaming of the Australian Aborigines or the Chronicles of Narnia, from the Nirvana of Buddhism to the Christian Kingdom of Heaven. Over time, the humble campfire stories morphed into the splendour and ritual of organized religion and the great works of drama and literature.
Even in our secular age, where many societies have evolved to a post-religious phase, people still have unfulfilled spiritual yearnings. A project with the scope and profundity of SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) cannot be divorced from this wider cultural context, for it too offers us the compelling promise that this could happen any day soon. As writer David Brin has pointed out, 'contact with advanced alien civilizations may carry much the same transcendental or hopeful significance as any more traditional notion of "salvation from above". I have argued that if we did make contact with an advanced extraterrestrial community, the entities with which we would be dealing would approach godlike status in our eyes. Certainly they would be more godlike than humanlike; indeed, their powers would be greater than those attributed to most gods in human history.'
So is SETI itself in danger of becoming a latter day religion? Science fiction writer Michael Crichton thought so. He said: "Faith is defined as the firm belief in something for which there is no proof," he explained. "The belief that there are other life forms in the universe is a matter of faith. There is not a single shred of evidence for any other life forms, and in forty years of searching, none has been discovered." Writer Margaret Wertheim has studied how the concept of space and its inhabitants has evolved over several centuries. She traces the modern notion of aliens to Renaissance writers such as the Roman Catholic Cardinal Nichols of Cusa, who considered the status of man in the universe in relation to celestial beings such as angels.
With the arrival of the scientific age, speculations about alien beings passed from theologians to science fiction writers, but the spiritual dimension remained just below the surface. Occasionally it is made explicit, as in Olaf Stapledon's Star Maker, David Lindsay's A Voyage to Arcturus, or Steven Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which is strongly reminiscent of John Bunyan's A Pilgrim's Progress. These are iconic images that resonate deeply with the human psyche, and shadow the scientific quest to discover intelligent life beyond Earth.

(2016)

Q. It can be inferred from the passage that, ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’

Solution:

The author mentions in the last paragraph, "These are iconic images that resonate deeply with the human psyche, and shadow the scientific quest to discover intelligent life beyond Earth".

QUESTION: 36

Directions for Questions: Read the following passage and answer the questions the follow it.
PASSAGE

Humans have a basic need to perceive themselves as part of a grand scheme, of a natural order that has a deeper significance and greater endurance than the petty affairs of daily life. The incongruous mismatch between the futility of the human condition and the brooding majesty of the cosmos compels people to seek a transcendent meaning to underpin their fragile existence.
For thousands of years this broader context was provided by tribal mythology and storytelling. The transporting qualities of those narratives gave human beings a crucial spiritual anchor. All cultures lay claim to haunting myths of other-worldliness: from the dreaming of the Australian Aborigines or the Chronicles of Narnia, from the Nirvana of Buddhism to the Christian Kingdom of Heaven. Over time, the humble campfire stories morphed into the splendour and ritual of organized religion and the great works of drama and literature.
Even in our secular age, where many societies have evolved to a post-religious phase, people still have unfulfilled spiritual yearnings. A project with the scope and profundity of SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) cannot be divorced from this wider cultural context, for it too offers us the compelling promise that this could happen any day soon. As writer David Brin has pointed out, 'contact with advanced alien civilizations may carry much the same transcendental or hopeful significance as any more traditional notion of "salvation from above". I have argued that if we did make contact with an advanced extraterrestrial community, the entities with which we would be dealing would approach godlike status in our eyes. Certainly they would be more godlike than humanlike; indeed, their powers would be greater than those attributed to most gods in human history.'
So is SETI itself in danger of becoming a latter day religion? Science fiction writer Michael Crichton thought so. He said: "Faith is defined as the firm belief in something for which there is no proof," he explained. "The belief that there are other life forms in the universe is a matter of faith. There is not a single shred of evidence for any other life forms, and in forty years of searching, none has been discovered." Writer Margaret Wertheim has studied how the concept of space and its inhabitants has evolved over several centuries. She traces the modern notion of aliens to Renaissance writers such as the Roman Catholic Cardinal Nichols of Cusa, who considered the status of man in the universe in relation to celestial beings such as angels.
With the arrival of the scientific age, speculations about alien beings passed from theologians to science fiction writers, but the spiritual dimension remained just below the surface. Occasionally it is made explicit, as in Olaf Stapledon's Star Maker, David Lindsay's A Voyage to Arcturus, or Steven Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which is strongly reminiscent of John Bunyan's A Pilgrim's Progress. These are iconic images that resonate deeply with the human psyche, and shadow the scientific quest to discover intelligent life beyond Earth.

(2016)

Q. Which of the following statements reflects or captures the author ’s view on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence?

Solution:

The author mentions "writers such as the Roman Catholic Cardinal Nichols of Cusa, who considered the status of man in the universe in relation to celestial beings such as angels".

QUESTION: 37

Directions for Questions: Read the following passage and answer the questions the follow it.
PASSAGE

Humans have a basic need to perceive themselves as part of a grand scheme, of a natural order that has a deeper significance and greater endurance than the petty affairs of daily life. The incongruous mismatch between the futility of the human condition and the brooding majesty of the cosmos compels people to seek a transcendent meaning to underpin their fragile existence.
For thousands of years this broader context was provided by tribal mythology and storytelling. The transporting qualities of those narratives gave human beings a crucial spiritual anchor. All cultures lay claim to haunting myths of other-worldliness: from the dreaming of the Australian Aborigines or the Chronicles of Narnia, from the Nirvana of Buddhism to the Christian Kingdom of Heaven. Over time, the humble campfire stories morphed into the splendour and ritual of organized religion and the great works of drama and literature.
Even in our secular age, where many societies have evolved to a post-religious phase, people still have unfulfilled spiritual yearnings. A project with the scope and profundity of SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) cannot be divorced from this wider cultural context, for it too offers us the compelling promise that this could happen any day soon. As writer David Brin has pointed out, 'contact with advanced alien civilizations may carry much the same transcendental or hopeful significance as any more traditional notion of "salvation from above". I have argued that if we did make contact with an advanced extraterrestrial community, the entities with which we would be dealing would approach godlike status in our eyes. Certainly they would be more godlike than humanlike; indeed, their powers would be greater than those attributed to most gods in human history.'
So is SETI itself in danger of becoming a latter day religion? Science fiction writer Michael Crichton thought so. He said: "Faith is defined as the firm belief in something for which there is no proof," he explained. "The belief that there are other life forms in the universe is a matter of faith. There is not a single shred of evidence for any other life forms, and in forty years of searching, none has been discovered." Writer Margaret Wertheim has studied how the concept of space and its inhabitants has evolved over several centuries. She traces the modern notion of aliens to Renaissance writers such as the Roman Catholic Cardinal Nichols of Cusa, who considered the status of man in the universe in relation to celestial beings such as angels.
With the arrival of the scientific age, speculations about alien beings passed from theologians to science fiction writers, but the spiritual dimension remained just below the surface. Occasionally it is made explicit, as in Olaf Stapledon's Star Maker, David Lindsay's A Voyage to Arcturus, or Steven Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which is strongly reminiscent of John Bunyan's A Pilgrim's Progress. These are iconic images that resonate deeply with the human psyche, and shadow the scientific quest to discover intelligent life beyond Earth.

(2016)

Q. Great literary works, according to the passage

Solution:

The author mentions in paragraph second, "The transporting qualities of those narratives gave human beings a crucial spiritual anchor".

QUESTION: 38

Directions for Questions: Read the following passage and answer the questions that follow it.
PASSAGE 

Some artists go out in a blaze of glory. Pierre-Auguste Renoir went out in a blaze of kitsch. At least, that's the received opinion about the work of his final decades: all those pillowy nudes, sunning their abundant selves in dappled glades; all those peachy girls, strumming guitars and idling in bourgeois parlors; all that pink. In the long twilight of his career, the old man found his way to a kissable classicism that modern eyes can find awfully hard to take.
All the same, the Renoir of this period-the three very productive decades before his death in 1919 at the age of 78 fascinated some of the chief figures of modernism. Picasso was on board; his thick-limbed  'neoclassical' women from the 1920 are indebted to Renoir.
So was Matisse, who had one eye on Renoir's Orientalist dress-up fantasies like the Concert, with its flattened space and overall patterning, when he produced his odalisques. Given that so much of late Renoir seems saccharine and semi comical to us, is it still possible to see what made it modern to them?
Yes and no. To understand the Renoir in the 20th Century you have to remember that before he became a semi classicist, he was a consummate Impressionist. You need to picture him in 1874, 33 years old, painting side by side with Monet in Argenteuil, teasing out the new possibilities of sketchy brushwork to capture fleeting light as it fell across people and things in an indisputably modern world.
But in the decade that followed, Renoir became one of the movement's first apostates. Impressionism affected many people in the 19th century in much the way the internet does now. It both charmed and unnerved them. It brought to painting a novel immediacy, but it also gave back a world that felt weightless and unstable. What we now call post Impressionism was the inevitable by-product of that anxiety. Artists like Seurat and Gauguin searched for an art that owed nothing to the stale models of academicism but possessed the substance and authority that Impressionism had let fall away.
For Renoir, a turning point came during his honeymoon to Rome and Naples in 1881. Face to face with the firm outlines of Raphael and the musculature of Michelangelo, he lost faith in his flickering sunbeams. He returned to France determined to find his way to lucid, distinct forms in an art that reached for the eternal, not the momentary. By the later years of that decade, Renoir had lost his taste for the modern world anyway. As for modern women, in 1888 he could write, "I consider that women who are authors, lawyers and politicians are monsters". ("The woman who is an artist," he added graciously, "is merely ridiculous.") Ah, but the woman who is a goddess-or at least harks back to one that is different matter. It would be Renoir's aim to reconfigure the female nude in a way that would convey the spirit of the classical world without classical trappings. Set in "timeless" outdoor settings, these women by their weight and scale and serenity alone-along with their often recognizably classical poses would point back to antiquity.
For a time, Renoir worked with figures so strongly outlined that they could have been put down by Ingres with a jackhammer. By 1892, he had drifted back toward a fluctuating impressionist brushstroke. Firmly contoured or flickering, his softly scalped women are as full-bodied as Doric columns. This was one of the qualities that caught Picasso's eye, especially after his first trip to Italy, in 1917.
He would assimilate Renoir along-side his own sources in Iberian sculpture and elsewhere to come up with a frankly more powerful, even haunting, amalgam of the antique and the modern in paintings like Woman in a White Hat.
Renoir was most valuable as a stepping-stone for artists making more potent use of the ideas he was developing. The heart of the problem is the challenge. Renoir set for himself: to reconcile classical and Renaissance models with the 18th century French painters he loved. To synthesize the force and clarity of classicism with the intimacy and charm of the Rococo is a nearly impossible trick. How do you cross the power of Phidias with the delicacy of Fragonard? The answer: at your own risk-especially the risk of admitting into your work the weaknesses of the Rococo. It's fine line between charming and insipid, and 18th century French painters crossed it all the time. So did Renoir.

(2016)

Q. All of the following are true in light of the passage EXCEPT.

Solution:

In the third paragraph, the author mentions clearly "before he became a semi classicist, he was a consummate Impressionist".

QUESTION: 39

Directions for Questions: Read the following passage and answer the questions that follow it.
PASSAGE 

Some artists go out in a blaze of glory. Pierre-Auguste Renoir went out in a blaze of kitsch. At least, that's the received opinion about the work of his final decades: all those pillowy nudes, sunning their abundant selves in dappled glades; all those peachy girls, strumming guitars and idling in bourgeois parlors; all that pink. In the long twilight of his career, the old man found his way to a kissable classicism that modern eyes can find awfully hard to take.
All the same, the Renoir of this period-the three very productive decades before his death in 1919 at the age of 78 fascinated some of the chief figures of modernism. Picasso was on board; his thick-limbed  'neoclassical' women from the 1920 are indebted to Renoir.
So was Matisse, who had one eye on Renoir's Orientalist dress-up fantasies like the Concert, with its flattened space and overall patterning, when he produced his odalisques. Given that so much of late Renoir seems saccharine and semi comical to us, is it still possible to see what made it modern to them?
Yes and no. To understand the Renoir in the 20th Century you have to remember that before he became a semi classicist, he was a consummate Impressionist. You need to picture him in 1874, 33 years old, painting side by side with Monet in Argenteuil, teasing out the new possibilities of sketchy brushwork to capture fleeting light as it fell across people and things in an indisputably modern world.
But in the decade that followed, Renoir became one of the movement's first apostates. Impressionism affected many people in the 19th century in much the way the internet does now. It both charmed and unnerved them. It brought to painting a novel immediacy, but it also gave back a world that felt weightless and unstable. What we now call post Impressionism was the inevitable by-product of that anxiety. Artists like Seurat and Gauguin searched for an art that owed nothing to the stale models of academicism but possessed the substance and authority that Impressionism had let fall away.
For Renoir, a turning point came during his honeymoon to Rome and Naples in 1881. Face to face with the firm outlines of Raphael and the musculature of Michelangelo, he lost faith in his flickering sunbeams. He returned to France determined to find his way to lucid, distinct forms in an art that reached for the eternal, not the momentary. By the later years of that decade, Renoir had lost his taste for the modern world anyway. As for modern women, in 1888 he could write, "I consider that women who are authors, lawyers and politicians are monsters". ("The woman who is an artist," he added graciously, "is merely ridiculous.") Ah, but the woman who is a goddess-or at least harks back to one that is different matter. It would be Renoir's aim to reconfigure the female nude in a way that would convey the spirit of the classical world without classical trappings. Set in "timeless" outdoor settings, these women by their weight and scale and serenity alone-along with their often recognizably classical poses would point back to antiquity.
For a time, Renoir worked with figures so strongly outlined that they could have been put down by Ingres with a jackhammer. By 1892, he had drifted back toward a fluctuating impressionist brushstroke. Firmly contoured or flickering, his softly scalped women are as full-bodied as Doric columns. This was one of the qualities that caught Picasso's eye, especially after his first trip to Italy, in 1917.
He would assimilate Renoir along-side his own sources in Iberian sculpture and elsewhere to come up with a frankly more powerful, even haunting, amalgam of the antique and the modern in paintings like Woman in a White Hat.
Renoir was most valuable as a stepping-stone for artists making more potent use of the ideas he was developing. The heart of the problem is the challenge. Renoir set for himself: to reconcile classical and Renaissance models with the 18th century French painters he loved. To synthesize the force and clarity of classicism with the intimacy and charm of the Rococo is a nearly impossible trick. How do you cross the power of Phidias with the delicacy of Fragonard? The answer: at your own risk-especially the risk of admitting into your work the weaknesses of the Rococo. It's fine line between charming and insipid, and 18th century French painters crossed it all the time. So did Renoir.

(2016)

Q. We can infer from the passage that the word ‘odalisques’ means

Solution:

The word 'odalisques' refers to a female slave or concubine in a harem.

QUESTION: 40

Directions for Questions: Read the following passage and answer the questions that follow it.
PASSAGE 

Some artists go out in a blaze of glory. Pierre-Auguste Renoir went out in a blaze of kitsch. At least, that's the received opinion about the work of his final decades: all those pillowy nudes, sunning their abundant selves in dappled glades; all those peachy girls, strumming guitars and idling in bourgeois parlors; all that pink. In the long twilight of his career, the old man found his way to a kissable classicism that modern eyes can find awfully hard to take.
All the same, the Renoir of this period-the three very productive decades before his death in 1919 at the age of 78 fascinated some of the chief figures of modernism. Picasso was on board; his thick-limbed  'neoclassical' women from the 1920 are indebted to Renoir.
So was Matisse, who had one eye on Renoir's Orientalist dress-up fantasies like the Concert, with its flattened space and overall patterning, when he produced his odalisques. Given that so much of late Renoir seems saccharine and semi comical to us, is it still possible to see what made it modern to them?
Yes and no. To understand the Renoir in the 20th Century you have to remember that before he became a semi classicist, he was a consummate Impressionist. You need to picture him in 1874, 33 years old, painting side by side with Monet in Argenteuil, teasing out the new possibilities of sketchy brushwork to capture fleeting light as it fell across people and things in an indisputably modern world.
But in the decade that followed, Renoir became one of the movement's first apostates. Impressionism affected many people in the 19th century in much the way the internet does now. It both charmed and unnerved them. It brought to painting a novel immediacy, but it also gave back a world that felt weightless and unstable. What we now call post Impressionism was the inevitable by-product of that anxiety. Artists like Seurat and Gauguin searched for an art that owed nothing to the stale models of academicism but possessed the substance and authority that Impressionism had let fall away.
For Renoir, a turning point came during his honeymoon to Rome and Naples in 1881. Face to face with the firm outlines of Raphael and the musculature of Michelangelo, he lost faith in his flickering sunbeams. He returned to France determined to find his way to lucid, distinct forms in an art that reached for the eternal, not the momentary. By the later years of that decade, Renoir had lost his taste for the modern world anyway. As for modern women, in 1888 he could write, "I consider that women who are authors, lawyers and politicians are monsters". ("The woman who is an artist," he added graciously, "is merely ridiculous.") Ah, but the woman who is a goddess-or at least harks back to one that is different matter. It would be Renoir's aim to reconfigure the female nude in a way that would convey the spirit of the classical world without classical trappings. Set in "timeless" outdoor settings, these women by their weight and scale and serenity alone-along with their often recognizably classical poses would point back to antiquity.
For a time, Renoir worked with figures so strongly outlined that they could have been put down by Ingres with a jackhammer. By 1892, he had drifted back toward a fluctuating impressionist brushstroke. Firmly contoured or flickering, his softly scalped women are as full-bodied as Doric columns. This was one of the qualities that caught Picasso's eye, especially after his first trip to Italy, in 1917.
He would assimilate Renoir along-side his own sources in Iberian sculpture and elsewhere to come up with a frankly more powerful, even haunting, amalgam of the antique and the modern in paintings like Woman in a White Hat.
Renoir was most valuable as a stepping-stone for artists making more potent use of the ideas he was developing. The heart of the problem is the challenge. Renoir set for himself: to reconcile classical and Renaissance models with the 18th century French painters he loved. To synthesize the force and clarity of classicism with the intimacy and charm of the Rococo is a nearly impossible trick. How do you cross the power of Phidias with the delicacy of Fragonard? The answer: at your own risk-especially the risk of admitting into your work the weaknesses of the Rococo. It's fine line between charming and insipid, and 18th century French painters crossed it all the time. So did Renoir.

(2016)

Q. The passage suggests that

Solution:

The author in the last paragraph mentions "To synthesize the force and clarity of classicism with the intimacy and charm of the Rococo is a nearly impossible trick." Since Rococo is an early to late French 18thcentury artistic movement and style, affecting many aspects of the arts.

QUESTION: 41

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

From Billie Holiday to Kurt Cobain, Jeff Buckley to Lana Del Rey, we enjoy the music of suffering and sadness, songs that help us through our worst moments – broken relationships, melancholy, mania. Summed up by John Cusack’s indie-sad lad in the film of High Fidelity – “What came first? The music or the misery?” – we espouse the miserable and the hopeless.
However, the musicians behind the songs are often an afterthought. Or if not that, they’re subject to the notion that their depression is a creative spark and their mental illness the driving force behind compelling art. As someone who has suffered from severe depression, the romantic notion of the doomed artist is not all that. You put on weight and then lose it, you sleep too much or too little, and the myriad other symptoms dictate that it’s not the gladiola-swinging, woe-is-me fest it’s talked up to be. But does this connection between art and angst have any foundation?
Research earlier this year linked high childhood IQ to an increased risk of experiencing bipolar traits in later life. “There is something about the genetics underlying the disorder that are advantageous,” said Daniel Smith of the University of Glasgow, who led the study. “One possibility is that serious disorders of mood – such as bipolar disorder – are the price that human beings have had to pay for more adaptive traits such as intelligence, creativity and verbal proficiency.” Marjorie Wallace, chief executive of Sane, a mental health charity, considers this concept potentially harmful, given that not all cases of bipolar disorder are the same. Although tormented geniuses exist – figures such as Robert Schumann and Van Gogh – she says their talents are not necessarily a byproduct of being bipolar. “The majority of people may have the illness but not the gift.” “There is,” she adds, “the possibility that somebody who has fragile mental health can be sensitive to other dimensions. I also think that there is a ‘tormented genius’ link, particularly with people who have bipolar disorder. However, not everybody with mental illness can possibly be gifted artistically or musically. So it can make people who aren’t feel even less adequate, and even more of a failure.” So is the troubled artist fallacy damaging the music industry? Alanna McArdle, formerly of Joanna Gruesome, believes so.“It’s a harmful trope that leads to ignorance and a lack of awareness of what mental illness actually is and what it can do to a person,” she says. “I went out with a guy who told me that I shouldn’t be so resentful of my mental illness because it’s allowed me to create some amazing art. But I think that’s wrong, and I also think it’s a very offensive stance to take. I would much rather never write another song if the tradeoff was to not have my illness.”The idea of mental illness as a creative force is, to most people who suffer from it, a myth. The chronic lack of self-esteem caused by mental illness, the numbing effect of antidepressants and the grip of anxiety on a performer who looks as if they have it easy are barriers that can prevent a musician from doing their job. Pete Doherty, for example, cancelled a number of Libertines shows in September after suffering from a severe anxiety attack. “Depression and anxiety, in different ways, have the effect of limiting someone’s capacity for expression and reaching out towards the world,” says Simon Procter, a programme director at music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins, who has co-headed a paper on music therapy and depression.

(2015)

Q. Which of the following options depict the main idea of the passage?

Solution:

Options (c) and (d) can be excluded as their scope is too narrow. Option (b) is wrong because the passage doesn't focus on how attitude of the world towards mental health has improved. Option (a) is the central idea of the passage. So it is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 42

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

From Billie Holiday to Kurt Cobain, Jeff Buckley to Lana Del Rey, we enjoy the music of suffering and sadness, songs that help us through our worst moments – broken relationships, melancholy, mania. Summed up by John Cusack’s indie-sad lad in the film of High Fidelity – “What came first? The music or the misery?” – we espouse the miserable and the hopeless.
However, the musicians behind the songs are often an afterthought. Or if not that, they’re subject to the notion that their depression is a creative spark and their mental illness the driving force behind compelling art. As someone who has suffered from severe depression, the romantic notion of the doomed artist is not all that. You put on weight and then lose it, you sleep too much or too little, and the myriad other symptoms dictate that it’s not the gladiola-swinging, woe-is-me fest it’s talked up to be. But does this connection between art and angst have any foundation?
Research earlier this year linked high childhood IQ to an increased risk of experiencing bipolar traits in later life. “There is something about the genetics underlying the disorder that are advantageous,” said Daniel Smith of the University of Glasgow, who led the study. “One possibility is that serious disorders of mood – such as bipolar disorder – are the price that human beings have had to pay for more adaptive traits such as intelligence, creativity and verbal proficiency.” Marjorie Wallace, chief executive of Sane, a mental health charity, considers this concept potentially harmful, given that not all cases of bipolar disorder are the same. Although tormented geniuses exist – figures such as Robert Schumann and Van Gogh – she says their talents are not necessarily a byproduct of being bipolar. “The majority of people may have the illness but not the gift.” “There is,” she adds, “the possibility that somebody who has fragile mental health can be sensitive to other dimensions. I also think that there is a ‘tormented genius’ link, particularly with people who have bipolar disorder. However, not everybody with mental illness can possibly be gifted artistically or musically. So it can make people who aren’t feel even less adequate, and even more of a failure.” So is the troubled artist fallacy damaging the music industry? Alanna McArdle, formerly of Joanna Gruesome, believes so.“It’s a harmful trope that leads to ignorance and a lack of awareness of what mental illness actually is and what it can do to a person,” she says. “I went out with a guy who told me that I shouldn’t be so resentful of my mental illness because it’s allowed me to create some amazing art. But I think that’s wrong, and I also think it’s a very offensive stance to take. I would much rather never write another song if the tradeoff was to not have my illness.”The idea of mental illness as a creative force is, to most people who suffer from it, a myth. The chronic lack of self-esteem caused by mental illness, the numbing effect of antidepressants and the grip of anxiety on a performer who looks as if they have it easy are barriers that can prevent a musician from doing their job. Pete Doherty, for example, cancelled a number of Libertines shows in September after suffering from a severe anxiety attack. “Depression and anxiety, in different ways, have the effect of limiting someone’s capacity for expression and reaching out towards the world,” says Simon Procter, a programme director at music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins, who has co-headed a paper on music therapy and depression.

(2015)

Q. Which of the following statements by a famous musician can substantiate the perspective that mental illness helps creativity?

Solution:

Option (c) is not relevant as it doesn't mention the creation of artistic work. The passage is about the 'troubled artist fallacy' which suggests that people who suffer from mental illness create great work as a result of their struggle. Both options (a) and (b) can be inferred from the passage. So (d) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 43

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

From Billie Holiday to Kurt Cobain, Jeff Buckley to Lana Del Rey, we enjoy the music of suffering and sadness, songs that help us through our worst moments – broken relationships, melancholy, mania. Summed up by John Cusack’s indie-sad lad in the film of High Fidelity – “What came first? The music or the misery?” – we espouse the miserable and the hopeless.
However, the musicians behind the songs are often an afterthought. Or if not that, they’re subject to the notion that their depression is a creative spark and their mental illness the driving force behind compelling art. As someone who has suffered from severe depression, the romantic notion of the doomed artist is not all that. You put on weight and then lose it, you sleep too much or too little, and the myriad other symptoms dictate that it’s not the gladiola-swinging, woe-is-me fest it’s talked up to be. But does this connection between art and angst have any foundation?
Research earlier this year linked high childhood IQ to an increased risk of experiencing bipolar traits in later life. “There is something about the genetics underlying the disorder that are advantageous,” said Daniel Smith of the University of Glasgow, who led the study. “One possibility is that serious disorders of mood – such as bipolar disorder – are the price that human beings have had to pay for more adaptive traits such as intelligence, creativity and verbal proficiency.” Marjorie Wallace, chief executive of Sane, a mental health charity, considers this concept potentially harmful, given that not all cases of bipolar disorder are the same. Although tormented geniuses exist – figures such as Robert Schumann and Van Gogh – she says their talents are not necessarily a byproduct of being bipolar. “The majority of people may have the illness but not the gift.” “There is,” she adds, “the possibility that somebody who has fragile mental health can be sensitive to other dimensions. I also think that there is a ‘tormented genius’ link, particularly with people who have bipolar disorder. However, not everybody with mental illness can possibly be gifted artistically or musically. So it can make people who aren’t feel even less adequate, and even more of a failure.” So is the troubled artist fallacy damaging the music industry? Alanna McArdle, formerly of Joanna Gruesome, believes so.“It’s a harmful trope that leads to ignorance and a lack of awareness of what mental illness actually is and what it can do to a person,” she says. “I went out with a guy who told me that I shouldn’t be so resentful of my mental illness because it’s allowed me to create some amazing art. But I think that’s wrong, and I also think it’s a very offensive stance to take. I would much rather never write another song if the tradeoff was to not have my illness.”The idea of mental illness as a creative force is, to most people who suffer from it, a myth. The chronic lack of self-esteem caused by mental illness, the numbing effect of antidepressants and the grip of anxiety on a performer who looks as if they have it easy are barriers that can prevent a musician from doing their job. Pete Doherty, for example, cancelled a number of Libertines shows in September after suffering from a severe anxiety attack. “Depression and anxiety, in different ways, have the effect of limiting someone’s capacity for expression and reaching out towards the world,” says Simon Procter, a programme director at music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins, who has co-headed a paper on music therapy and depression.

(2015)

Q. How is the idea of mental illness as a creative force harmful to people in general?

Solution:

Option (a) is incorrect as it mentions bad behaviour which is not described in the paragraph. Options (b) and (c) are not relevant. One sentence in the fourth paragraph - "However, not everybody with mental illness…... more of a failure" - answers the question.
So option (d) is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 44

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

From Billie Holiday to Kurt Cobain, Jeff Buckley to Lana Del Rey, we enjoy the music of suffering and sadness, songs that help us through our worst moments – broken relationships, melancholy, mania. Summed up by John Cusack’s indie-sad lad in the film of High Fidelity – “What came first? The music or the misery?” – we espouse the miserable and the hopeless.
However, the musicians behind the songs are often an afterthought. Or if not that, they’re subject to the notion that their depression is a creative spark and their mental illness the driving force behind compelling art. As someone who has suffered from severe depression, the romantic notion of the doomed artist is not all that. You put on weight and then lose it, you sleep too much or too little, and the myriad other symptoms dictate that it’s not the gladiola-swinging, woe-is-me fest it’s talked up to be. But does this connection between art and angst have any foundation?
Research earlier this year linked high childhood IQ to an increased risk of experiencing bipolar traits in later life. “There is something about the genetics underlying the disorder that are advantageous,” said Daniel Smith of the University of Glasgow, who led the study. “One possibility is that serious disorders of mood – such as bipolar disorder – are the price that human beings have had to pay for more adaptive traits such as intelligence, creativity and verbal proficiency.” Marjorie Wallace, chief executive of Sane, a mental health charity, considers this concept potentially harmful, given that not all cases of bipolar disorder are the same. Although tormented geniuses exist – figures such as Robert Schumann and Van Gogh – she says their talents are not necessarily a byproduct of being bipolar. “The majority of people may have the illness but not the gift.” “There is,” she adds, “the possibility that somebody who has fragile mental health can be sensitive to other dimensions. I also think that there is a ‘tormented genius’ link, particularly with people who have bipolar disorder. However, not everybody with mental illness can possibly be gifted artistically or musically. So it can make people who aren’t feel even less adequate, and even more of a failure.” So is the troubled artist fallacy damaging the music industry? Alanna McArdle, formerly of Joanna Gruesome, believes so.“It’s a harmful trope that leads to ignorance and a lack of awareness of what mental illness actually is and what it can do to a person,” she says. “I went out with a guy who told me that I shouldn’t be so resentful of my mental illness because it’s allowed me to create some amazing art. But I think that’s wrong, and I also think it’s a very offensive stance to take. I would much rather never write another song if the tradeoff was to not have my illness.”The idea of mental illness as a creative force is, to most people who suffer from it, a myth. The chronic lack of self-esteem caused by mental illness, the numbing effect of antidepressants and the grip of anxiety on a performer who looks as if they have it easy are barriers that can prevent a musician from doing their job. Pete Doherty, for example, cancelled a number of Libertines shows in September after suffering from a severe anxiety attack. “Depression and anxiety, in different ways, have the effect of limiting someone’s capacity for expression and reaching out towards the world,” says Simon Procter, a programme director at music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins, who has co-headed a paper on music therapy and depression.

(2015)

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

Solution:

Option (b) is incorrect because it cannot be deduced from the passage. Option (c) is incorrect because the passage doesn't mention it. Option (d) is incorrect due to the term 'common occurrence'. Only option (a) can be inferred from the passage so it is the correct answer.

QUESTION: 45

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

From Billie Holiday to Kurt Cobain, Jeff Buckley to Lana Del Rey, we enjoy the music of suffering and sadness, songs that help us through our worst moments – broken relationships, melancholy, mania. Summed up by John Cusack’s indie-sad lad in the film of High Fidelity – “What came first? The music or the misery?” – we espouse the miserable and the hopeless.
However, the musicians behind the songs are often an afterthought. Or if not that, they’re subject to the notion that their depression is a creative spark and their mental illness the driving force behind compelling art. As someone who has suffered from severe depression, the romantic notion of the doomed artist is not all that. You put on weight and then lose it, you sleep too much or too little, and the myriad other symptoms dictate that it’s not the gladiola-swinging, woe-is-me fest it’s talked up to be. But does this connection between art and angst have any foundation?
Research earlier this year linked high childhood IQ to an increased risk of experiencing bipolar traits in later life. “There is something about the genetics underlying the disorder that are advantageous,” said Daniel Smith of the University of Glasgow, who led the study. “One possibility is that serious disorders of mood – such as bipolar disorder – are the price that human beings have had to pay for more adaptive traits such as intelligence, creativity and verbal proficiency.” Marjorie Wallace, chief executive of Sane, a mental health charity, considers this concept potentially harmful, given that not all cases of bipolar disorder are the same. Although tormented geniuses exist – figures such as Robert Schumann and Van Gogh – she says their talents are not necessarily a byproduct of being bipolar. “The majority of people may have the illness but not the gift.” “There is,” she adds, “the possibility that somebody who has fragile mental health can be sensitive to other dimensions. I also think that there is a ‘tormented genius’ link, particularly with people who have bipolar disorder. However, not everybody with mental illness can possibly be gifted artistically or musically. So it can make people who aren’t feel even less adequate, and even more of a failure.” So is the troubled artist fallacy damaging the music industry? Alanna McArdle, formerly of Joanna Gruesome, believes so.“It’s a harmful trope that leads to ignorance and a lack of awareness of what mental illness actually is and what it can do to a person,” she says. “I went out with a guy who told me that I shouldn’t be so resentful of my mental illness because it’s allowed me to create some amazing art. But I think that’s wrong, and I also think it’s a very offensive stance to take. I would much rather never write another song if the tradeoff was to not have my illness.”The idea of mental illness as a creative force is, to most people who suffer from it, a myth. The chronic lack of self-esteem caused by mental illness, the numbing effect of antidepressants and the grip of anxiety on a performer who looks as if they have it easy are barriers that can prevent a musician from doing their job. Pete Doherty, for example, cancelled a number of Libertines shows in September after suffering from a severe anxiety attack. “Depression and anxiety, in different ways, have the effect of limiting someone’s capacity for expression and reaching out towards the world,” says Simon Procter, a programme director at music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins, who has co-headed a paper on music therapy and depression.

(2015)

Q. What can be inferred about Alanna McArdle from the passage?

Solution:

Option (a) is incorrect because it cannot be inferred that she is an art prodigy. Option (c) is incorrect because she doesn't appreciate her illness. Option (d) is an extreme conclusion. Option (b) can be inferred from the passage so it is the correct answer.